Daiwa Securities Group Inc. lessened its stake in Altria Group (NYSE:MO) by 29.0% during the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 159,720 shares of the company’s stock after selling 65,202 shares during the quarter. Daiwa Securities Group Inc.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $11,894,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other large investors also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Sterling Investment Advisors Ltd. raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 133.3% in the 1st quarter. Sterling Investment Advisors Ltd. now owns 1,400 shares of the company’s stock worth $100,000 after purchasing an additional 800 shares during the period. Perigon Wealth Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 4.7% in the 1st quarter. Perigon Wealth Management LLC now owns 1,641 shares of the company’s stock worth $118,000 after purchasing an additional 74 shares during the period. Proficio Capital Partners LLC raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 97.4% in the 1st quarter. Proficio Capital Partners LLC now owns 1,664 shares of the company’s stock worth $121,000 after purchasing an additional 821 shares during the period. Advantage Investment Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 1.9% in the 1st quarter. Advantage Investment Management LLC now owns 1,752 shares of the company’s stock worth $125,000 after purchasing an additional 32 shares during the period. Finally, American Beacon Advisors Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Altria Group in the 1st quarter worth approximately $164,000. 61.85% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
A number of equities research analysts recently commented on the stock. Cowen and Company set a $78.00 price target on shares of Altria Group and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, July 28th. Berenberg Bank set a $72.00 price target on shares of Altria Group and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Sunday, August 6th. UBS AG lowered their price target on shares of Altria Group from $78.00 to $72.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, July 31st. Stifel Nicolaus lowered their price target on shares of Altria Group from $77.00 to $72.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, July 31st. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $70.00 price target (down previously from $71.00) on shares of Altria Group in a report on Monday, July 17th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating, six have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $71.57.
Altria Group (MO) opened at 63.57 on Tuesday. Altria Group has a 1-year low of $60.01 and a 1-year high of $77.79. The company has a 50-day moving average of $63.20 and a 200-day moving average of $69.74. The stock has a market capitalization of $122.56 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.38 and a beta of 0.64.
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The company reported $0.85 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.86 by ($0.01). Altria Group had a return on equity of 59.50% and a net margin of 56.98%. The business had revenue of $4.37 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.02 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.81 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 3.2% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts anticipate that Altria Group will post $3.26 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be given a $0.66 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 14th. This is an increase from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.61. This represents a $2.64 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.15%. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 34.83%.
Altria Group announced that its Board of Directors has approved a stock buyback plan on Thursday, July 27th that permits the company to buyback $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the company to repurchase up to 0.7% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are generally a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
In other Altria Group news, Director Dinyar S. Devitre sold 32,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $61.22, for a total value of $1,959,040.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Martin J. Barrington sold 15,300 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $65.03, for a total transaction of $994,959.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 701,074 shares in the company, valued at $45,590,842.22. The disclosure for this sale can be found TRADEMARK VIOLATION WARNING: “Daiwa Securities Group Inc. Lowers Position in Altria Group (MO)” was originally posted by The Ledger Gazette and is the property of of The Ledger Gazette. If you are reading this story on another domain, it was illegally copied and republished in violation of international copyright and trademark laws. The legal version of this story can be viewed at https://ledgergazette.com/2017/10/10/daiwa-securities-group-inc-lowers-position-in-altria-group-mo.html.