Hosking Partners LLP lowered its holdings in shares of Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 4.5% in the 4th quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 281,517 shares of the company’s stock after selling 13,228 shares during the period. Hosking Partners LLP’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $13,904,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its stake in Altria Group by 0.8% during the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 141,423,951 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,529,279,000 after purchasing an additional 1,107,891 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc boosted its holdings in Altria Group by 0.8% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 141,423,951 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,529,279,000 after acquiring an additional 1,107,891 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in Altria Group by 1.8% in the third quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 141,022,748 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,505,083,000 after acquiring an additional 2,433,533 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC boosted its holdings in Altria Group by 10.3% in the third quarter. FMR LLC now owns 41,106,747 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,479,149,000 after acquiring an additional 3,842,889 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Capital International Investors boosted its holdings in Altria Group by 698.6% in the third quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 31,992,124 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,929,445,000 after acquiring an additional 27,986,154 shares in the last quarter. 64.10% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
MO stock opened at $56.40 on Friday. Altria Group Inc has a twelve month low of $42.40 and a twelve month high of $66.04. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.80, a quick ratio of 0.09 and a current ratio of 0.20. The company has a market capitalization of $105.72 billion, a PE ratio of 14.14, a P/E/G ratio of 1.66 and a beta of 0.37.
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, January 31st. The company reported $0.95 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.95. Altria Group had a return on equity of 49.05% and a net margin of 27.45%. The company had revenue of $4.79 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.81 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.91 earnings per share. Equities research analysts anticipate that Altria Group Inc will post 4.21 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, April 30th. Stockholders of record on Monday, March 25th will be issued a $0.80 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, March 22nd. This represents a $3.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 5.67%. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio is presently 80.20%.
Several brokerages have issued reports on MO. Barclays began coverage on Altria Group in a report on Friday, December 7th. They issued an “overweight” rating and a $64.00 price target on the stock. Jefferies Financial Group set a $56.00 price target on Altria Group and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, November 29th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $75.00 price target on Altria Group and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, December 11th. Wells Fargo & Co cut their price target on Altria Group from $75.00 to $65.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, November 26th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Citigroup lowered Altria Group from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, December 21st. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $65.86.
In related news, Director Nabil Y. Sakkab bought 1,352 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, February 25th. The shares were bought at an average price of $52.11 per share, for a total transaction of $70,452.72. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now directly owns 39,660 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,066,682.60. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, VP Ivan S. Feldman sold 6,802 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $51.18, for a total value of $348,126.36. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.11% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
About Altria Group
Altria Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, smokeless products, and wine in the United States. It offers cigarettes primarily under the Marlboro brand; cigars principally under the Black & Mild brand; and moist smokeless tobacco products under the Copenhagen, Skoal, Red Seal, and Husky brands.
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