Walgreens Boots Alliance’s (NASDAQ:WBA) Buy Rating Reiterated at Robert W. Baird

Robert W. Baird reiterated their buy rating on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) in a research note published on Thursday, January 4th. They currently have a $82.00 target price on the pharmacy operator’s stock.

WBA has been the topic of a number of other research reports. Royal Bank of Canada assumed coverage on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a report on Tuesday, September 19th. They issued an outperform rating and a $96.00 price objective on the stock. Jefferies Group restated a buy rating and issued a $95.00 price objective on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a report on Monday, October 2nd. Raymond James Financial restated a market perform rating on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a report on Wednesday, September 27th. Vetr downgraded shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating in a research note on Friday, December 1st. Finally, Needham & Company LLC reiterated a buy rating and issued a $94.00 target price on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a research note on Thursday, October 12th. Ten research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, fourteen have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $86.00.

Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) traded up $0.88 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $79.15. 3,556,343 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 5,560,000. Walgreens Boots Alliance has a 12-month low of $63.82 and a 12-month high of $88.00. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.48, a current ratio of 0.96 and a quick ratio of 0.47. The stock has a market capitalization of $78,410.00, a PE ratio of 21.86, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.32 and a beta of 1.22.

Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, January 4th. The pharmacy operator reported $1.28 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.27 by $0.01. Walgreens Boots Alliance had a net margin of 3.19% and a return on equity of 19.15%. The company had revenue of $30.74 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $30.39 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.10 earnings per share. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s quarterly revenue was up 7.9% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts expect that Walgreens Boots Alliance will post 5.71 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Walgreens Boots Alliance declared that its board has approved a stock buyback plan on Wednesday, October 25th that allows the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the pharmacy operator to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, March 12th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, February 15th will be given a dividend of $0.40 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, February 14th. This represents a $1.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.02%. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 44.20%.

In other news, Director William C. Foote sold 2,736 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, November 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $67.37, for a total value of $184,324.32. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 16,415 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,105,878.55. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, insider Stefano Pessina acquired 98,858 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, January 15th. The shares were bought at an average price of $76.07 per share, with a total value of $7,520,128.06. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 14.80% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Cigna Investments Inc. New increased its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 8.8% during the 4th quarter. Cigna Investments Inc. New now owns 39,527 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $2,871,000 after purchasing an additional 3,184 shares during the period. Schaper Benz & Wise Investment Counsel Inc. WI increased its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 3.5% during the 4th quarter. Schaper Benz & Wise Investment Counsel Inc. WI now owns 208,798 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $15,163,000 after purchasing an additional 7,051 shares during the period. Arthur M. Cohen & Associates LLC purchased a new position in Walgreens Boots Alliance during the 4th quarter valued at about $2,557,000. Nelson Roberts Investment Advisors LLC purchased a new position in Walgreens Boots Alliance during the 4th quarter valued at about $182,000. Finally, Parsec Financial Management Inc. increased its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 3.9% during the 4th quarter. Parsec Financial Management Inc. now owns 50,500 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $3,667,000 after purchasing an additional 1,912 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 61.15% of the company’s stock.

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Walgreens Boots Alliance Company Profile

Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc (Walgreens Boots Alliance) is a holding company. The Company is a global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise. Walgreens Boots Alliance operates through three divisions, including Retail Pharmacy USA, Retail Pharmacy International and Pharmaceutical Wholesale. The Company’s products are marketed under a number of brands, which include No7, the Botanics range, Almus (generic medicines), Boots Pharmaceuticals and Soap & Glory (bathing and beauty brand).

Analyst Recommendations for Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA)

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