Daiwa Securities Group Inc. decreased its position in shares of Valero Energy Co. (NYSE:VLO) by 10.0% in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 32,210 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock after selling 3,566 shares during the period. Daiwa Securities Group Inc.’s holdings in Valero Energy were worth $2,960,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Bank of New York Mellon Corp grew its position in shares of Valero Energy by 4.3% during the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 11,273,542 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $867,273,000 after purchasing an additional 469,406 shares in the last quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. grew its position in shares of Valero Energy by 0.7% during the third quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 3,538,559 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $272,222,000 after purchasing an additional 25,498 shares in the last quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. grew its position in shares of Valero Energy by 14.5% during the third quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 3,251,977 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $250,174,000 after purchasing an additional 411,630 shares in the last quarter. Bank of Montreal Can grew its position in shares of Valero Energy by 17.4% during the fourth quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 3,200,849 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $294,188,000 after purchasing an additional 475,381 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc grew its position in shares of Valero Energy by 2.8% during the third quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 2,818,535 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $216,838,000 after purchasing an additional 77,428 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 81.03% of the company’s stock.

In other Valero Energy news, CFO Michael S. Ciskowski sold 251,530 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $93.29, for a total transaction of $23,465,233.70. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 309,119 shares in the company, valued at $28,837,711.51. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Stephen M. Waters sold 1,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $87.23, for a total value of $87,230.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 298,187 shares of company stock valued at $27,611,828. 0.45% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of brokerages have recently weighed in on VLO. Citigroup raised their price objective on Valero Energy from $76.00 to $96.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 24th. Bank of America raised their price objective on Valero Energy from $102.00 to $105.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 24th. Piper Jaffray Companies restated a “hold” rating and set a $98.00 price objective on shares of Valero Energy in a research report on Monday, January 22nd. Cowen restated a “buy” rating and set a $100.00 price objective on shares of Valero Energy in a research report on Thursday, February 1st. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada restated a “buy” rating and set a $110.00 price objective on shares of Valero Energy in a research report on Tuesday, January 30th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have assigned a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $89.06.

Valero Energy Co. (NYSE VLO) opened at $89.48 on Wednesday. The company has a market capitalization of $39,150.00, a PE ratio of 19.41, a P/E/G ratio of 1.10 and a beta of 0.99. Valero Energy Co. has a 12-month low of $60.69 and a 12-month high of $99.95. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.39, a current ratio of 1.91 and a quick ratio of 1.24.

Valero Energy (NYSE:VLO) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 1st. The oil and gas company reported $1.16 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.08 by $0.08. The company had revenue of $26.39 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $23.02 billion. Valero Energy had a return on equity of 10.55% and a net margin of 4.33%. The firm’s revenue was up 27.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.81 earnings per share. analysts expect that Valero Energy Co. will post 7.23 EPS for the current year.

Valero Energy declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback plan on Tuesday, January 23rd that allows the company to buyback $2.50 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the oil and gas company to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, March 6th. Investors of record on Tuesday, February 13th will be given a $0.80 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, February 12th. This represents a $3.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.58%. This is a positive change from Valero Energy’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.70. Valero Energy’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 69.41%.

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About Valero Energy

Valero Energy Corporation (Valero) is an independent petroleum refiner and ethanol producer. The Company’s segments include refining, ethanol and Valero Energy Partners LP (VLP). The refining segment includes its refining operations and the associated marketing activities. The ethanol segment includes its ethanol operations and the associated marketing activities, and logistics assets that support its ethanol operations.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Valero Energy (NYSE:VLO)

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