Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT) to Issue Quarterly Dividend of $0.52

Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) declared a quarterly dividend on Wednesday, February 21st, Wall Street Journal reports. Stockholders of record on Friday, May 11th will be paid a dividend of 0.52 per share by the retailer on Monday, June 4th. This represents a $2.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.26%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, May 10th.

Wal-Mart Stores has raised its dividend payment by an average of 2.1% annually over the last three years and has raised its dividend every year for the last 43 years. Wal-Mart Stores has a payout ratio of 46.0% indicating that its dividend is sufficiently covered by earnings. Research analysts expect Wal-Mart Stores to earn $5.45 per share next year, which means the company should continue to be able to cover its $2.04 annual dividend with an expected future payout ratio of 37.4%.

Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) opened at $91.95 on Thursday. The company has a market cap of $278,789.78, a PE ratio of 28.12, a PEG ratio of 3.40 and a beta of 0.42. 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 has a 52-week low of $69.33 and a 52-week high of $109.98.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, February 20th. The retailer reported $1.33 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.37 by ($0.04). The company had revenue of $135.15 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $133.63 billion. Wal-Mart Stores had a net margin of 1.97% and a return on equity of 17.00%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 4.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $1.30 EPS. sell-side analysts forecast that Wal-Mart Stores will post 4.86 EPS for the current fiscal year.

WMT has been the topic of a number of analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, January 6th. Wells Fargo & Co set a $101.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, December 27th. Jefferies Group set a $105.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, November 14th. Goldman Sachs Group reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $113.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Friday, February 16th. Finally, Barclays set a $100.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, November 13th. Sixteen investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, sixteen have assigned a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $102.15.

In other news, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 2,057,004 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $96.69, for a total transaction of $198,891,716.76. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 6,748,580 shares in the company, valued at $652,520,200.20. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director S Robson Walton sold 1,169,848 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $96.89, for a total transaction of $113,346,572.72. Following the transaction, the director now owns 3,345,065 shares in the company, valued at $324,103,347.85. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 7,635,405 shares of company stock worth $742,168,245 over the last quarter. 51.39% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in WMT. Quadrant Capital Group LLC lifted its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 6.4% during the second quarter. Quadrant Capital Group LLC now owns 3,892 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $252,000 after purchasing an additional 235 shares in the last quarter. Miles Capital Inc. lifted its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 3.1% during the second quarter. Miles Capital Inc. now owns 3,557 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $269,000 after purchasing an additional 106 shares in the last quarter. San Francisco Sentry Investment Group CA lifted its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 24.3% during the second quarter. San Francisco Sentry Investment Group CA now owns 3,564 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $269,000 after purchasing an additional 696 shares in the last quarter. Gyroscope Capital Management Group LLC acquired a new position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores during the second quarter worth approximately $297,000. Finally, Krilogy Financial LLC lifted its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 5.1% during the second quarter. Krilogy Financial LLC now owns 5,186 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $393,000 after purchasing an additional 253 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 30.33% of the company’s stock.

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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.

Dividend History for Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT)

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