Meeder Asset Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 2,254.2% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 1,389 shares of the company’s stock after acquiring an additional 1,330 shares during the period. Meeder Asset Management Inc.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $66,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Several other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in MO. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management lifted its stake in Altria Group by 4.7% in the first quarter. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management now owns 5,124 shares of the company’s stock worth $294,000 after acquiring an additional 229 shares during the last quarter. Busey Wealth Management lifted its position in shares of Altria Group by 1.5% during the 2nd quarter. Busey Wealth Management now owns 15,478 shares of the company’s stock worth $732,000 after buying an additional 234 shares during the last quarter. Brand Asset Management Group Inc. lifted its position in shares of Altria Group by 24.8% during the 1st quarter. Brand Asset Management Group Inc. now owns 1,186 shares of the company’s stock worth $68,000 after buying an additional 236 shares during the last quarter. Country Trust Bank lifted its position in shares of Altria Group by 86.9% during the 1st quarter. Country Trust Bank now owns 514 shares of the company’s stock worth $30,000 after buying an additional 239 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Investors Asset Management of Georgia Inc. GA ADV lifted its position in shares of Altria Group by 0.6% during the 2nd quarter. Investors Asset Management of Georgia Inc. GA ADV now owns 37,591 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,780,000 after buying an additional 240 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 62.72% of the company’s stock.
Shares of MO opened at $44.78 on Wednesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.87, a quick ratio of 0.28 and a current ratio of 0.56. The stock has a market capitalization of $86.70 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.22, a P/E/G ratio of 1.45 and a beta of 0.38. The company’s fifty day moving average is $47.97 and its two-hundred day moving average is $51.35. Altria Group Inc has a 1 year low of $42.40 and a 1 year high of $66.04.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, October 10th. Shareholders of record on Monday, September 16th will be paid a $0.84 dividend. This is a boost from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.80. This represents a $3.36 annualized dividend and a yield of 7.50%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, September 13th. Altria Group’s payout ratio is currently 80.20%.
Altria Group declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock repurchase plan on Tuesday, July 30th that permits the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the company to repurchase up to 1.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are often a sign that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.
Several brokerages have recently weighed in on MO. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 29th. TheStreet downgraded shares of Altria Group from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 14th. Morgan Stanley raised shares of Altria Group from an “underweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and set a $44.00 target price on the stock in a report on Friday, August 23rd. Wells Fargo & Co reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Altria Group in a report on Friday, August 9th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group cut shares of Altria Group from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $49.86 target price on the stock. in a report on Friday, July 12th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the stock. Altria Group currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $60.74.
About Altria Group
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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