Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ:WBA) Stake Raised by Washington Trust Bank

Washington Trust Bank increased its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ:WBA) by 1.5% during the second quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 8,224 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock after buying an additional 124 shares during the period. Washington Trust Bank’s holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance were worth $644,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in WBA. Russell Investments Group Ltd. raised its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 72.9% in the first quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 482,962 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $40,115,000 after buying an additional 203,635 shares during the period. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD raised its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 9.3% in the first quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD now owns 75,821 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $6,296,000 after buying an additional 6,462 shares during the period. Welch & Forbes LLC raised its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 4.8% in the first quarter. Welch & Forbes LLC now owns 96,882 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $8,046,000 after buying an additional 4,453 shares during the period. SpiderRock Advisors LLC acquired a new position in Walgreens Boots Alliance during the first quarter valued at approximately $301,000. Finally, Founders Capital Management LLC raised its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 1.7% in the first quarter. Founders Capital Management LLC now owns 71,991 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $5,979,000 after buying an additional 1,180 shares during the period. 61.17% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ WBA) traded down 0.94% during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $80.52. 1,740,014 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. has a 52 week low of $75.18 and a 52 week high of $88.00. The stock has a market capitalization of $86.16 billion, a P/E ratio of 20.33 and a beta of 1.25. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $78.91 and a 200 day moving average of $82.32.

Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, June 29th. The pharmacy operator reported $1.33 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.30 by $0.03. Walgreens Boots Alliance had a net margin of 3.69% and a return on equity of 17.34%. The firm had revenue of $30.12 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $29.72 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.18 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 2.1% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts forecast that Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. will post $5.01 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Walgreens Boots Alliance declared that its board has initiated a share repurchase plan on Thursday, June 29th that allows the company to buyback $5.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the pharmacy operator to repurchase up to 5.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are generally an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 12th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 18th will be issued a dividend of $0.40 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 16th. This represents a $1.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.97%. This is a positive change from Walgreens Boots Alliance’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.38. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s dividend payout ratio is currently 37.78%.

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Several research analysts have recently commented on WBA shares. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 14th. Jefferies Group LLC decreased their price target on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance from $95.00 to $80.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Wednesday, May 31st. Needham & Company LLC started coverage on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a report on Tuesday, June 27th. They issued a “hold” rating for the company. Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $97.00 price target on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a report on Thursday, July 13th. Finally, Leerink Swann set a $86.00 price target on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, July 7th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Walgreens Boots Alliance presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $90.69.

In other Walgreens Boots Alliance news, Director William C. Foote sold 2,736 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $79.79, for a total transaction of $218,305.44. Following the sale, the director now owns 19,151 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,528,058.29. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 13.50% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA)

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