Schroder Investment Management Group Boosts Position in Altria Group, Inc. (NYSE:MO)

Schroder Investment Management Group boosted its position in shares of Altria Group, Inc. (NYSE:MO) by 1.8% during the fourth quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 2,913,462 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 52,080 shares during the quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $119,452,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Fiduciary Group LLC raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 2.7% in the fourth quarter. Fiduciary Group LLC now owns 9,196 shares of the company’s stock worth $398,000 after acquiring an additional 240 shares during the last quarter. McIlrath & Eck LLC raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 11.7% in the fourth quarter. McIlrath & Eck LLC now owns 2,294 shares of the company’s stock worth $94,000 after acquiring an additional 241 shares during the last quarter. Garde Capital Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 4.5% in the third quarter. Garde Capital Inc. now owns 5,702 shares of the company’s stock worth $220,000 after acquiring an additional 248 shares during the last quarter. Cannell Peter B & Co. Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 3.2% in the fourth quarter. Cannell Peter B & Co. Inc. now owns 8,325 shares of the company’s stock worth $341,000 after acquiring an additional 260 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Gerber Kawasaki Wealth & Investment Management raised its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 4.7% in the fourth quarter. Gerber Kawasaki Wealth & Investment Management now owns 6,405 shares of the company’s stock worth $262,000 after acquiring an additional 285 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 62.18% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE:MO opened at $51.13 on Thursday. The firm has a market capitalization of $95.03 billion, a PE ratio of 142.03, a P/E/G ratio of 2.25 and a beta of 0.54. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 8.59, a current ratio of 0.77 and a quick ratio of 0.55. The business has a 50-day moving average of $47.87 and a two-hundred day moving average of $42.40. Altria Group, Inc. has a 12 month low of $35.02 and a 12 month high of $52.59.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, January 27th. The company reported $0.99 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.02 by ($0.03). The firm had revenue of $5.06 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.95 billion. Altria Group had a return on equity of 148.93% and a net margin of 2.84%. The business’s revenue was up 5.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.02 earnings per share. As a group, research analysts anticipate that Altria Group, Inc. will post 4.37 earnings per share for the current year.

Altria Group announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock buyback program on Thursday, January 28th that authorizes the company to repurchase $2.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to buy up to 2.6% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, April 30th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, March 25th will be paid a dividend of $0.86 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, March 24th. This represents a $3.44 annualized dividend and a yield of 6.73%. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio is presently 81.52%.

MO has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. UBS Group cut Altria Group from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $46.00 price target for the company. in a report on Tuesday, March 16th. Sanford C. Bernstein started coverage on Altria Group in a research note on Tuesday, January 19th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $53.00 target price for the company. TheStreet upgraded Altria Group from a “c” rating to a “b-” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 28th. Royal Bank of Canada reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Altria Group in a research note on Sunday, January 31st. Finally, Jefferies Financial Group upgraded Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their target price for the company from $40.00 to $58.00 in a research note on Thursday, April 1st. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Altria Group presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $49.90.

Altria Group Profile

Altria Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, oral tobacco 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, as well as provides on! oral nicotine pouches.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Altria Group (NYSE:MO)

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