Retirement Systems of Alabama increased its stake in Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) by 3.0% during the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 1,582,960 shares of the retailer’s stock after buying an additional 45,683 shares during the period. Wal-Mart Stores accounts for approximately 0.7% of Retirement Systems of Alabama’s portfolio, making the stock its 23rd largest position. Retirement Systems of Alabama owned 0.05% of Wal-Mart Stores worth $115,588,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other large investors also recently made changes to their positions in WMT. Wade G W & Inc. increased its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 43.7% in the first quarter. Wade G W & Inc. now owns 5,715 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $391,000 after buying an additional 1,738 shares in the last quarter. Glenmede Trust Co. NA boosted its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 5.6% in the first quarter. Glenmede Trust Co. NA now owns 698,478 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $47,838,000 after buying an additional 37,264 shares during the period. Sii Investments Inc. WI boosted its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 30.2% in the first quarter. Sii Investments Inc. WI now owns 9,742 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $668,000 after buying an additional 2,258 shares during the period. Sanders Morris Harris Inc. acquired a new stake in Wal-Mart Stores during the first quarter worth approximately $917,000. Finally, Commonwealth Equity Services Inc boosted its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 7.2% in the first quarter. Commonwealth Equity Services Inc now owns 377,826 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $25,877,000 after buying an additional 25,497 shares during the period. 29.55% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT)

Shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) traded down 0.95% during midday trading on Friday, hitting $68.70. 12,653,847 shares of the stock were exchanged. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has a 12-month low of $56.30 and a 12-month high of $75.19. The company has a market cap of $212.51 billion, a PE ratio of 14.79 and a beta of 0.20. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $71.77 and a 200-day moving average price of $70.95.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, August 18th. The retailer reported $1.07 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.02 by $0.05. Wal-Mart Stores had a net margin of 3.04% and a return on equity of 17.93%. The business had revenue of $120.90 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $119.33 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.08 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up .5% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts predict that Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will post $4.34 EPS for the current year.

A number of research firms have recently commented on WMT. Royal Bank Of Canada raised their target price on Wal-Mart Stores from $73.00 to $76.00 and gave the company an “underperform” rating in a research report on Friday, August 19th. Jefferies Group set a $85.00 target price on Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 9th. Bank of America Corp. restated a “neutral” rating and set a $72.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research report on Saturday, June 25th. Telsey Advisory Group raised their target price on Wal-Mart Stores from $71.00 to $78.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research report on Friday, August 19th. Finally, Morgan Stanley set a $76.00 target price on Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, August 19th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have issued a hold rating, nine have issued a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $75.56.

In other news, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 2,100,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $71.44, for a total value of $150,024,000.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 6,748,580 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $482,118,555.20. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 3,504,756 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $71.37, for a total transaction of $250,134,435.72. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 6,748,580 shares in the company, valued at approximately $481,646,154.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 51.55% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Wal-Mart Stores Company Profile

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc is engaged in the operation of retail, wholesale and other units in various formats around the world. The Company offers an assortment of merchandise and services at everyday low prices (EDLP). The Company operates through three segments: Walmart U.S., Walmart International and Sam’s Club.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:WMT

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