Media headlines about Altria (NYSE:MO) have trended somewhat positive recently, according to Accern Sentiment Analysis. The research firm identifies positive and negative press coverage by monitoring more than twenty million news and blog sources in real-time. Accern ranks coverage of companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores closest to one being the most favorable. Altria earned a media sentiment score of 0.12 on Accern’s scale. Accern also gave news articles about the company an impact score of 46.6435308186746 out of 100, indicating that recent press coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an impact on the stock’s share price in the near term.
These are some of the news articles that may have impacted Accern Sentiment Analysis’s scoring:
MO has been the topic of several recent research reports. Jefferies Financial Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $84.00 target price on shares of Altria in a report on Thursday, March 15th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Altria from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, April 20th. Citigroup lowered shares of Altria from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $75.00 target price on the stock. in a report on Wednesday, April 18th. Consumer Edge initiated coverage on shares of Altria in a report on Monday, June 11th. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $69.31 target price on the stock. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada raised shares of Altria from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday, April 30th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating, ten have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Altria currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $72.08.
Shares of Altria opened at $56.46 on Thursday, Marketbeat reports. The firm has a market capitalization of $106.86 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.70, a PEG ratio of 1.64 and a beta of 0.62. Altria has a 12-month low of $53.91 and a 12-month high of $74.98. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.85, a quick ratio of 0.34 and a current ratio of 0.65.
Altria (NYSE:MO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 26th. The company reported $0.95 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.93 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $4.67 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.63 billion. Altria had a net margin of 41.85% and a return on equity of 49.92%. The company’s revenue was up 1.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.73 EPS. research analysts expect that Altria will post 4 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Altria announced that its board has approved a stock buyback program on Thursday, May 17th that authorizes the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to purchase up to 1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, July 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 15th will be issued a $0.70 dividend. This represents a $2.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.96%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, June 14th. Altria’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 82.84%.
In related news, Director Mark Newman bought 5,345 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, April 30th. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $56.19 per share, with a total value of $300,335.55. Following the transaction, the director now owns 6,022 shares in the company, valued at approximately $338,376.18. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Company insiders own 0.11% of the company’s stock.
Altria Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, smokeless products, and wine in the United States. It offers cigarettes primarily under the Marlboro brand; cigars principally under the Black & Mild brand; and moist smokeless tobacco products under the Copenhagen, Skoal, Red Seal, and Husky brands.
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