Altria Group (MO) Position Boosted by Russell Investments Group Ltd.

Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its stake in Altria Group (NYSE:MO) by 22.7% during the first quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 2,563,499 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 474,122 shares during the period. Russell Investments Group Ltd.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $183,079,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other large investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Holderness Investments Co. raised its position in shares of Altria Group by 5.5% in the fourth quarter. Holderness Investments Co. now owns 3,565 shares of the company’s stock worth $241,000 after buying an additional 187 shares during the period. Cobiz Wealth LLC raised its position in shares of Altria Group by 1.1% in the fourth quarter. Cobiz Wealth LLC now owns 3,438 shares of the company’s stock worth $232,000 after buying an additional 38 shares during the period. Johnson Financial Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Altria Group by 0.5% in the fourth quarter. Johnson Financial Group Inc. now owns 174,921 shares of the company’s stock worth $11,828,000 after buying an additional 931 shares during the period. Cadence Capital Management LLC raised its position in shares of Altria Group by 1.6% in the fourth quarter. Cadence Capital Management LLC now owns 170,073 shares of the company’s stock worth $11,500,000 after buying an additional 2,619 shares during the period. Finally, Ffcm LLC acquired a new position in shares of Altria Group during the fourth quarter worth about $8,983,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 62.04% of the company’s stock.

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

Shares of Altria Group (MO) opened at 77.71 on Tuesday. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $73.14 and a 200-day moving average price of $71.63. The firm has a market capitalization of $150.68 billion, a P/E ratio of 10.52 and a beta of 0.66. Altria Group has a 52 week low of $60.82 and a 52 week high of $77.78.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, May 2nd. The company reported $0.73 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.74 by $0.01. Altria Group had a net margin of 55.99% and a return on equity of 76.43%. The company had revenue of $4.59 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.63 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.72 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 1.3% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts predict that Altria Group will post $3.28 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 10th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, June 15th will be given a $0.61 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, June 13th. This represents a $2.44 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.14%. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio is currently 33.02%.

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A number of brokerages have recently issued reports on MO. Vetr lowered Altria Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $80.38 target price on the stock. in a research report on Monday. Royal Bank Of Canada lowered Altria Group from a “sector perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $62.00 target price on the stock. in a research report on Thursday, March 23rd. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $71.00 target price on shares of Altria Group in a research report on Friday, March 24th. Barclays PLC reiterated an “equal weight” rating and set a $74.00 target price on shares of Altria Group in a research report on Wednesday, March 29th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies started coverage on Altria Group in a research report on Wednesday, May 24th. They set an “overweight” rating and a $76.00 target price on the stock. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $72.36.

In other news, Director George Munoz sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $72.35, for a total value of $361,750.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Director Dinyar S. Devitre sold 4,285 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, May 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.72, for a total value of $303,035.20. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 112,457 shares in the company, valued at $7,952,959.04. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.15% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Altria Group Company Profile

Altria Group, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s segments include smokeable products, smokeless products and wine. The Company’s subsidiaries include Philip Morris USA Inc (PM USA), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes in the United States; John Middleton Co (Middleton), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of machine-made cigars and pipe tobacco, and UST LLC (UST), which, through its subsidiaries, including U.S.

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