Foster Victor Wealth Advisors LLC Increases Stake in Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO)

Foster Victor Wealth Advisors LLC grew its position in shares of Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 145.4% in the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 45,936 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 27,217 shares during the quarter. Altria Group accounts for 1.1% of Foster Victor Wealth Advisors LLC’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 27th largest holding. Foster Victor Wealth Advisors LLC’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $1,937,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in MO. FMR LLC grew its stake in shares of Altria Group by 68.1% during the 1st quarter. FMR LLC now owns 78,710,352 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,520,337,000 after purchasing an additional 31,883,878 shares during the period. Nuveen Asset Management LLC grew its stake in shares of Altria Group by 584.6% during the 2nd quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 8,679,362 shares of the company’s stock worth $410,968,000 after purchasing an additional 7,411,523 shares during the period. AQR Capital Management LLC grew its stake in shares of Altria Group by 74.0% during the 2nd quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 4,727,202 shares of the company’s stock worth $223,833,000 after purchasing an additional 2,010,023 shares during the period. Natixis grew its stake in shares of Altria Group by 428.3% during the 2nd quarter. Natixis now owns 1,846,808 shares of the company’s stock worth $87,447,000 after purchasing an additional 1,497,259 shares during the period. Finally, Toronto Dominion Bank grew its stake in shares of Altria Group by 73.2% during the 2nd quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 2,428,023 shares of the company’s stock worth $114,938,000 after purchasing an additional 1,026,362 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 63.25% of the company’s stock.

A number of equities analysts have recently weighed in on MO shares. Goldman Sachs Group cut shares of Altria Group from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $49.86 price target on the stock. in a research note on Friday, July 12th. Morgan Stanley set a $44.00 price target on shares of Altria Group and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 24th. Cowen reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Altria Group in a research note on Thursday, September 12th. Wells Fargo & Co reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Altria Group in a research note on Monday, August 26th. Finally, TheStreet cut shares of Altria Group from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 14th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $57.53.

NYSE MO traded down $0.34 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $42.64. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 387,090 shares, compared to its average volume of 14,594,293. The stock has a market cap of $78.46 billion, a PE ratio of 10.75, a PEG ratio of 1.56 and a beta of 0.40. Altria Group Inc has a fifty-two week low of $39.30 and a fifty-two week high of $66.04. The company’s 50-day moving average is $42.78 and its two-hundred day moving average is $49.09. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.87, a quick ratio of 0.28 and a current ratio of 0.56.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 30th. The company reported $1.10 EPS for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.10. The firm had revenue of $5.19 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.08 billion. Altria Group had a net margin of 25.04% and a return on equity of 51.53%. The firm’s revenue was up 6.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $1.01 EPS. Equities analysts expect that Altria Group Inc will post 4.21 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, October 10th. Investors of record on Monday, September 16th were paid a $0.84 dividend. This represents a $3.36 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 7.88%. This is a boost from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.80. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, September 13th. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio is presently 84.21%.

Altria Group announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback plan on Tuesday, July 30th that allows the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to repurchase up to 1.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

Altria Group Profile

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Altria Group (NYSE:MO)

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