Fisher Asset Management LLC boosted its holdings in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) by 3.7% in the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 6,069,465 shares of the retailer’s stock after purchasing an additional 215,790 shares during the quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC owned about 0.20% of Wal-Mart Stores worth $474,268,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other hedge funds have also added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 0.4% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 105,673,654 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $7,997,381,000 after purchasing an additional 440,343 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC increased its holdings in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 45.3% in the 2nd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 17,982,372 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $1,360,906,000 after purchasing an additional 5,608,785 shares in the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its holdings in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 4.1% in the 2nd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 14,579,702 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $1,103,426,000 after purchasing an additional 580,373 shares in the last quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 1.9% in the 2nd quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 9,263,738 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $701,080,000 after purchasing an additional 174,296 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Ameriprise Financial Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 7.4% in the 2nd quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 8,874,416 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $671,623,000 after purchasing an additional 607,827 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 30.58% of the company’s stock.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) traded up $0.35 during trading on Thursday, hitting $100.02. 6,527,000 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 8,570,000. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. has a one year low of $65.28 and a one year high of $102.35. The firm has a market cap of $296,300.00, a PE ratio of 26.60, a P/E/G ratio of 3.69 and a beta of 0.37. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52, a current ratio of 0.81 and a quick ratio of 0.19.
Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 16th. The retailer reported $1.00 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.97 by $0.03. Wal-Mart Stores had a net margin of 2.31% and a return on equity of 16.92%. The company had revenue of $122.14 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $120.23 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.98 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.2% compared to the same quarter last year. equities research analysts predict that Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. will post 4.43 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Wal-Mart Stores announced that its board has initiated a stock buyback program on Tuesday, October 10th that authorizes the company to repurchase $20.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the retailer to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are usually a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.
In related news, insider Jacqueline P. Canney sold 2,065 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $96.99, for a total value of $200,284.35. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 19,060 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,848,629.40. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 2,900,679 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $97.82, for a total transaction of $283,744,419.78. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 6,748,580 shares in the company, valued at $660,146,095.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 12,419,588 shares of company stock worth $1,207,333,538 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 51.39% of the company’s stock.
WMT has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, January 6th. Wells Fargo & Co set a $101.00 price target on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 27th. BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “market weight” rating on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a report on Thursday, September 14th. Jefferies Group set a $105.00 price target on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, November 14th. Finally, Bank of America set a $100.00 price objective on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 10th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have given a hold rating, fifteen have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Wal-Mart Stores currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $97.09.
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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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