Highstreet Asset Management Inc. trimmed its stake in shares of Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 71.2% in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the SEC. The firm owned 71,222 shares of the company’s stock after selling 176,362 shares during the quarter. Highstreet Asset Management Inc.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $3,518,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Other large investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Ffcm LLC raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 1.6% during the 4th quarter. Ffcm LLC now owns 220,844 shares of the company’s stock worth $10,907,000 after buying an additional 3,438 shares in the last quarter. AGF Investments America Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 2.0% during the 4th quarter. AGF Investments America Inc. now owns 65,925 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,256,000 after buying an additional 1,323 shares in the last quarter. Hodges Capital Management Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 13.1% during the 4th quarter. Hodges Capital Management Inc. now owns 4,503 shares of the company’s stock worth $222,000 after buying an additional 520 shares in the last quarter. GAM Holding AG acquired a new position in shares of Altria Group during the 4th quarter worth $326,000. Finally, Costello Asset Management INC acquired a new position in shares of Altria Group during the 4th quarter worth $213,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 64.10% of the company’s stock.
In other news, Director Nabil Y. Sakkab bought 1,352 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, February 25th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $52.11 per share, with a total value of $70,452.72. Following the acquisition, the director now directly owns 39,660 shares in the company, valued at $2,066,682.60. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director Nabil Y. Sakkab bought 1,032 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, February 21st. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $50.42 per share, with a total value of $52,033.44. Following the acquisition, the director now owns 38,308 shares in the company, valued at $1,931,489.36. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 0.11% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Shares of MO opened at $56.40 on Friday. Altria Group Inc has a 12-month low of $42.40 and a 12-month high of $66.04. The company has a quick ratio of 0.09, a current ratio of 0.20 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.80. The stock has a market capitalization of $105.72 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.14, a PEG ratio of 1.66 and a beta of 0.37.
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, January 31st. The company reported $0.95 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.95. Altria Group had a return on equity of 49.05% and a net margin of 27.45%. The business had revenue of $4.79 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.81 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.91 EPS. As a group, research analysts forecast that Altria Group Inc will post 4.21 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, April 30th. Shareholders 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 yield of 5.67%. Altria Group’s payout ratio is presently 80.20%.
A number of research firms have recently commented on MO. Morgan Stanley cut Altria Group from an “equal weight” rating to an “underweight” rating in a report on Tuesday, January 22nd. ValuEngine raised Altria Group from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, January 31st. Citigroup cut Altria Group from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, December 21st. Cowen cut Altria Group from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a report on Monday, January 7th. Finally, Deutsche Bank lowered their price target on Altria Group from $62.00 to $55.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Friday, December 21st. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Altria Group currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $65.86.
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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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