Wealthfront Inc. increased its holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (NASDAQ:WBA) by 46.8% in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 17,063 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock after buying an additional 5,436 shares during the quarter. Wealthfront Inc.’s holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance were worth $1,239,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other hedge funds have also modified their holdings of the stock. LSV Asset Management boosted its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 38,624.0% during the 4th quarter. LSV Asset Management now owns 3,678,780 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $267,153,000 after purchasing an additional 3,669,280 shares in the last quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. boosted its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 24.7% during the 2nd quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 18,502,701 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $1,448,939,000 after purchasing an additional 3,662,302 shares in the last quarter. Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership boosted its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 471.4% during the 2nd quarter. Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership now owns 3,295,583 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $258,077,000 after purchasing an additional 2,718,800 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 2.8% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 69,985,653 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $5,480,577,000 after purchasing an additional 1,926,108 shares in the last quarter. Finally, CI Global Investments Inc. lifted its position in shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance by 32.0% during the 4th quarter. CI Global Investments Inc. now owns 7,373,589 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $535,470,000 after acquiring an additional 1,785,449 shares during the last quarter. 60.82% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
A number of brokerages have recently commented on WBA. Royal Bank of Canada set a $94.00 price objective on Walgreens Boots Alliance and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, February 16th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $76.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Wednesday, February 14th. Loop Capital set a $90.00 price objective on Walgreens Boots Alliance and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, February 13th. ValuEngine downgraded Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, February 2nd. Finally, Mizuho set a $87.00 price objective on Walgreens Boots Alliance and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 24th. Ten investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twelve have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $85.37.
In other Walgreens Boots Alliance news, insider Stefano Pessina bought 98,858 shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance stock in a transaction dated Monday, January 15th. The stock was bought at an average price of $76.07 per share, for a total transaction of $7,520,128.06. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. 14.80% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (NASDAQ:WBA) opened at $69.63 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $70,248.34, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.23, a PEG ratio of 1.19 and a beta of 1.18. Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc has a 1-year low of $63.82 and a 1-year high of $87.82. The company has a quick ratio of 0.47, a current ratio of 0.96 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.48.
Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) last released its earnings results on Thursday, January 4th. The pharmacy operator reported $1.28 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.27 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $30.74 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $30.39 billion. Walgreens Boots Alliance had a return on equity of 19.15% and a net margin of 3.19%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.10 earnings per share. sell-side analysts expect that Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc will post 5.73 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, March 12th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, February 15th will be issued a $0.40 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, February 14th. This represents a $1.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.30%. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s payout ratio is currently 44.20%.
Walgreens Boots Alliance announced that its board has initiated a share buyback plan on Wednesday, October 25th that allows the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the pharmacy operator to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
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About Walgreens Boots Alliance
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).
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