Altria Group (NYSE:MO) Announces Earnings Results
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) posted its earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The company reported $0.85 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.86 by $0.01, Bloomberg Earnings reports. The firm had revenue of $4.37 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.02 billion. Altria Group had a net margin of 56.98% and a return on equity of 59.50%. Altria Group’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.81 earnings per share.
Shares of Altria Group (MO) opened at 65.99 on Tuesday. The company has a market capitalization of $127.23 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.70 and a beta of 0.61. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $73.93 and its 200-day moving average price is $73.05. Altria Group has a one year low of $60.01 and a one year high of $77.79.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, July 10th. Investors of record on Thursday, June 15th were issued a dividend of $0.61 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, June 13th. This represents a $2.44 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.70%. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 32.19%.
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Altria Group announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Thursday, July 27th that allows the company to buyback $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the company to repurchase up to 0.7% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are usually a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.
A number of equities analysts have recently issued reports on the company. Berenberg Bank set a $72.00 price objective on Altria Group and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Sunday. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Altria Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 1st. BidaskClub raised Altria Group from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Wells Fargo & Company reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $80.00 target price on shares of Altria Group in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Finally, UBS AG decreased their target price on Altria Group from $78.00 to $72.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research note on Monday, July 31st. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating, seven have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $72.66.
In other Altria Group news, Director George Munoz sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $72.35, for a total transaction of $361,750.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Company insiders own 0.15% of the company’s stock.
A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Ancora Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Altria Group by 253.5% in the fourth quarter. Ancora Advisors LLC now owns 17,405 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,177,000 after buying an additional 12,482 shares in the last quarter. Seven Eight Capital LP acquired a new stake in shares of Altria Group during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $1,001,000. Hilltop Holdings Inc. increased its position in Altria Group by 3.8% in the fourth quarter. Hilltop Holdings Inc. now owns 51,691 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,495,000 after buying an additional 1,910 shares during the period. Kingdon Capital Management L.L.C. purchased a new position in Altria Group during the fourth quarter worth about $17,749,000. Finally, Soros Fund Management LLC purchased a new position in Altria Group during the fourth quarter worth about $352,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 62.47% of the company’s stock.
About Altria Group
Altria Group, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s segments include smokeable products, smokeless products and wine. The Company’s subsidiaries include Philip Morris USA Inc (PM USA), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes in the United States; John Middleton Co (Middleton), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of machine-made cigars and pipe tobacco, and UST LLC (UST), which, through its subsidiaries, including U.S.
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