Skba Capital Management LLC boosted its position in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) by 2.8% in the 3rd quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 294,800 shares of the retailer’s stock after purchasing an additional 7,900 shares during the period. Wal-Mart Stores makes up about 3.3% of Skba Capital Management LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 3rd largest holding. Skba Capital Management LLC’s holdings in Wal-Mart Stores were worth $23,036,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Voya Investment Management LLC raised its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 10.9% in the 2nd quarter. Voya Investment Management LLC now owns 2,983,092 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $225,760,000 after purchasing an additional 294,383 shares during the last quarter. Cutter & CO Brokerage Inc. raised its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 2.5% in the 2nd quarter. Cutter & CO Brokerage Inc. now owns 8,067 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $611,000 after purchasing an additional 200 shares during the last quarter. State of Wisconsin Investment Board raised its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 23.1% in the 2nd quarter. State of Wisconsin Investment Board now owns 2,095,792 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $158,610,000 after purchasing an additional 393,180 shares during the last quarter. Numeric Investors LLC raised its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 31.2% in the 2nd quarter. Numeric Investors LLC now owns 1,179,674 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $89,278,000 after purchasing an additional 280,430 shares during the last quarter. Finally, R. G. Niederhoffer Capital Management Inc. acquired a new position in Wal-Mart Stores in the 2nd quarter valued at about $363,000. 30.58% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Several research analysts recently weighed in on the stock. Macquarie set a $85.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday. Goldman Sachs Group raised shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday. Stephens set a $117.00 price objective on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $114.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Saturday, January 13th. Finally, Vetr raised shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $104.38 price objective for the company in a research note on Wednesday, January 10th. Eighteen equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, seventeen have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $99.44.

In other Wal-Mart Stores news, major shareholder Jim C. Walton sold 1,319,133 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, December 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $97.61, for a total value of $128,760,572.13. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 11,057,224 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,079,295,634.64. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, insider Jacqueline P. Canney sold 2,065 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $96.99, for a total value of $200,284.35. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 19,060 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,848,629.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 12,419,588 shares of company stock valued at $1,207,333,538. Corporate insiders own 51.39% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT) opened at $104.59 on Friday. The stock has a market cap of $308,976.47, a P/E ratio of 27.82, a P/E/G ratio of 4.12 and a beta of 0.37. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. has a 1 year low of $65.28 and a 1 year high of $104.94. The company has a current ratio of 0.81, a quick ratio of 0.19 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, November 16th. The retailer reported $1.00 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.97 by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $122.14 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $120.23 billion. Wal-Mart Stores had a net margin of 2.31% and a return on equity of 16.92%. The company’s revenue was up 4.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.98 EPS. analysts expect that Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. will post 4.44 earnings per share for the current year.

Wal-Mart Stores declared that its board has authorized a share buyback program on Tuesday, October 10th that authorizes the company to repurchase $20.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the retailer to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

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About Wal-Mart Stores

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc is engaged in the operation of retail, wholesale and other units in various formats around the world. The Company operates through three segments: Walmart U.S., Walmart International and Sam’s Club. The Walmart U.S. segment includes its mass merchant concept in the United States operating under the Walmart or Wal-Mart brands, as well as digital retail.

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

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