Berkshire Asset Management LLC PA reduced its stake in shares of Altria Group (NYSE:MO) by 9.2% during the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 47,609 shares of the company’s stock after selling 4,807 shares during the period. Berkshire Asset Management LLC PA’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $3,545,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other hedge funds have also added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Swiss National Bank raised its stake in shares of Altria Group by 25.1% in the first quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 7,486,394 shares of the company’s stock worth $534,678,000 after buying an additional 1,501,400 shares during the period. Karp Capital Management Corp purchased a new stake in shares of Altria Group during the first quarter worth about $104,292,000. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board raised its stake in shares of Altria Group by 23.8% in the first quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 3,799,398 shares of the company’s stock worth $271,353,000 after buying an additional 730,600 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its stake in shares of Altria Group by 0.9% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 74,624,722 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,329,771,000 after buying an additional 687,246 shares during the period. Finally, Stevens Capital Management LP purchased a new stake in shares of Altria Group during the first quarter worth about $39,943,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 61.89% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Altria Group (NYSE MO) traded up 0.071% during trading on Friday, hitting $63.445. 2,659,029 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $67.32 and its 200 day moving average is $72.00. Altria Group has a 1-year low of $60.01 and a 1-year high of $77.79. The firm has a market capitalization of $122.32 billion, a PE ratio of 8.367 and a beta of 0.61.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 27th. The company reported $0.85 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.86 by $0.01. Altria Group had a net margin of 56.98% and a return on equity of 59.50%. The company had revenue of $4.37 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.02 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.81 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.2% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Altria Group will post $3.26 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 10th. Investors of record on Friday, September 15th will be given a dividend of $0.66 per share. 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 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.16%. Altria Group’s payout ratio is presently 32.19%.

Altria Group announced that its board has approved a stock buyback program on Thursday, July 27th that allows the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to purchase up to 0.7% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are typically a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

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MO has been the topic of a number of analyst reports. BidaskClub lowered shares of Altria Group from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 28th. Vetr upgraded shares of Altria Group from a “sell” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $80.18 target price on the stock in a research report on Monday, June 5th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $76.00 target price on shares of Altria Group and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 27th. Stifel Nicolaus decreased their target price on shares of Altria Group from $77.00 to $72.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research report on Monday, July 31st. Finally, Cowen and Company restated a “hold” rating and set a $74.00 target price on shares of Altria Group in a research report on Tuesday, July 11th. One investment 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. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $72.47.

In related news, CEO Martin J. Barrington sold 15,300 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $65.03, for a total transaction of $994,959.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 701,074 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $45,590,842.22. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Insiders own 0.11% of the company’s stock.

Altria Group Company Profile

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

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