Altria Group (NYSE:MO)‘s stock had its “neutral” rating restated by research analysts at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. in a research note issued on Saturday. They presently have a $68.00 price objective on the stock, down from their previous price objective of $69.00. Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s price objective suggests a potential upside of 8.90% from the stock’s previous close.
Several other research firms have also issued reports on MO. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $78.00 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, July 11th. Vetr raised shares of Altria Group from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $77.35 price objective for the company in a report on Wednesday, July 20th. Argus set a $73.00 price objective on shares of Altria Group and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, August 1st. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $71.00 price objective (up previously from $65.00) on shares of Altria Group in a report on Monday, June 27th. Finally, Citigroup Inc. began coverage on shares of Altria Group in a report on Monday, September 12th. They set a “buy” rating and a $72.00 price objective for the company. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $69.36.
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) traded down 0.40% during midday trading on Friday, reaching $62.44. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 4,716,586 shares. The stock has a market capitalization of $122.01 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.68 and a beta of 0.52. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $63.79 and a 200 day moving average price of $64.96. Altria Group has a 52-week low of $56.15 and a 52-week high of $70.15.
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, July 27th. The company reported $0.81 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.80 by $0.01. Altria Group had a net margin of 22.05% and a return on equity of 198.82%. The business earned $6.52 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.01 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.74 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts predict that Altria Group will post $3.05 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, October 11th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, September 15th were paid a $0.61 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, September 13th. This is a boost from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.57. This represents a $2.44 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.91%. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 84.72%.
In other news, SVP James E. Dillard III sold 9,000 shares of Altria Group stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $66.68, for a total transaction of $600,120.00. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, SVP Charles N. Whitaker sold 11,000 shares of Altria Group stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $66.53, for a total transaction of $731,830.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.15% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.
Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. First PREMIER Bank purchased a new position in shares of Altria Group during the second quarter worth $103,000. First Personal Financial Services boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 66.3% in the second quarter. First Personal Financial Services now owns 1,603 shares of the company’s stock worth $111,000 after buying an additional 639 shares in the last quarter. Tortoise Investment Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 26.6% in the second quarter. Tortoise Investment Management LLC now owns 1,654 shares of the company’s stock worth $114,000 after buying an additional 348 shares in the last quarter. CapWealth Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 6.3% in the first quarter. CapWealth Advisors LLC now owns 2,073 shares of the company’s stock worth $130,000 after buying an additional 123 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Zions Bancorporation boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 48.4% in the second quarter. Zions Bancorporation now owns 1,971 shares of the company’s stock worth $137,000 after buying an additional 643 shares in the last quarter. 61.29% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Altria Group Company Profile
Altria Group, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s subsidiaries include Philip Morris USA Inc (PM USA), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes in the United States; John Middleton Co (Middleton), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of machine-made large cigars and pipe tobacco, and UST LLC (UST), which through its subsidiaries, including U.S.
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