KeyCorp began coverage on shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) in a research note issued to investors on Thursday, The Fly reports. The firm set an “overweight” rating on the retailer’s stock.
WMT has been the topic of a number of other reports. Deutsche Bank AG restated a “hold” rating and issued a $77.00 price objective (up from $68.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a report on Tuesday, August 2nd. Buckingham Research reaffirmed a “neutral” rating on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research report on Thursday, August 18th. Vetr downgraded shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $76.24 target price on the stock. in a research report on Monday, August 8th. Nomura set a $81.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, August 19th. Finally, Jefferies Group raised shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their target price for the company from $60.00 to $82.00 in a research report on Monday, June 6th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have assigned a hold rating, nine have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $74.78.
Shares of Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) traded down 1.48% during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $70.73. 7,984,636 shares of the stock were exchanged. Wal-Mart Stores has a 12 month low of $56.30 and a 12 month high of $75.19. The company has a market cap of $218.79 billion, a PE ratio of 15.23 and a beta of 0.22. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $72.30 and a 200-day moving average price of $70.81.
Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 18th. The retailer reported $1.07 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.02 by $0.05. Wal-Mart Stores had a net margin of 3.04% and a return on equity of 17.93%. The business had revenue of $120.90 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $119.33 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $1.08 EPS. The company’s revenue was up .5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that Wal-Mart Stores will post $4.34 EPS for the current year.
In other Wal-Mart Stores news, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 3,504,756 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $71.37, for a total transaction of $250,134,435.72. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 6,748,580 shares in the company, valued at $481,646,154.60. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, major shareholder Jim C. Walton sold 3,502,398 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $73.02, for a total transaction of $255,745,101.96. Following the sale, the insider now owns 10,507,127 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $767,230,413.54. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 51.55% of the company’s stock.
A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in WMT. Fisher Asset Management LLC increased its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 1,671.0% in the second quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 4,930,805 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $365,175,000 after buying an additional 4,652,393 shares in the last quarter. Bank of Montreal Can acquired a new stake in Wal-Mart Stores during the second quarter valued at about $309,966,000. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. acquired a new stake in Wal-Mart Stores during the second quarter valued at about $260,853,000. State Street Corp increased its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 2.5% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 71,591,885 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $4,903,327,000 after buying an additional 1,726,468 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its stake in Wal-Mart Stores by 24.3% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 7,418,449 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $541,665,000 after buying an additional 1,449,033 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 29.55% of the company’s stock.
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 offers an assortment of merchandise and services at everyday low prices (EDLP). The Company operates through three segments: Walmart U.S., Walmart International and Sam’s Club.
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