Altria (NYSE:MO) Shares Sold by Howland Capital Management LLC

Howland Capital Management LLC lowered its position in Altria (NYSE:MO) by 25.0% in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The firm owned 5,281 shares of the company’s stock after selling 1,763 shares during the period. Howland Capital Management LLC’s holdings in Altria were worth $329,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of MO. Legacy Capital Partners Inc. lifted its stake in Altria by 2.6% in the 4th quarter. Legacy Capital Partners Inc. now owns 30,075 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,148,000 after purchasing an additional 750 shares in the last quarter. Argent Trust Co lifted its stake in Altria by 4.2% in the 3rd quarter. Argent Trust Co now owns 19,326 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,226,000 after purchasing an additional 772 shares in the last quarter. Monroe Bank & Trust MI lifted its stake in Altria by 3.8% in the 4th quarter. Monroe Bank & Trust MI now owns 20,923 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,414,000 after purchasing an additional 772 shares in the last quarter. Canandaigua National Bank & Trust Co. lifted its stake in Altria by 7.7% in the 4th quarter. Canandaigua National Bank & Trust Co. now owns 10,895 shares of the company’s stock worth $778,000 after purchasing an additional 780 shares in the last quarter. Finally, IBM Retirement Fund lifted its stake in Altria by 1.7% in the 3rd quarter. IBM Retirement Fund now owns 48,106 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,359,000 after purchasing an additional 798 shares in the last quarter. 63.05% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Shares of Altria opened at $55.29 on Friday, according to MarketBeat.com. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.85, a quick ratio of 0.34 and a current ratio of 0.65. The stock has a market cap of $103.19 billion, a PE ratio of 16.36, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.59 and a beta of 0.63. Altria has a 12-month low of $54.58 and a 12-month high of $55.29.

Altria (NYSE:MO) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, April 26th. The company reported $0.95 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.93 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $4.67 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.63 billion. Altria had a net margin of 41.85% and a return on equity of 49.92%. The business’s revenue was up 1.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.73 EPS. sell-side analysts expect that Altria will post 4 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, July 10th. Investors of record on Friday, June 15th will be issued a dividend of $0.70 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, June 14th. This represents a $2.80 annualized dividend and a yield of 5.06%. Altria’s payout ratio is 82.84%.

Altria declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Thursday, February 1st that authorizes the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are generally a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

MO has been the topic of several research analyst reports. Jefferies Group upgraded shares of Altria from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and decreased their price target for the stock from $70.04 to $70.00 in a research note on Friday, January 19th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Altria from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $78.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, February 6th. Vetr upgraded shares of Altria from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $71.45 price target on the stock in a research note on Monday, February 5th. Deutsche Bank initiated coverage on shares of Altria in a research note on Monday, March 26th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $72.00 price target on the stock. Finally, Argus reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $79.00 price target (up previously from $66.13) on shares of Altria in a research note on Wednesday, March 14th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating, ten have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $73.42.

In other news, Director Mark Newman purchased 5,345 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 30th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $56.19 per share, for a total transaction of $300,335.55. Following the acquisition, the director now owns 6,022 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $338,376.18. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP W Hildebrandt Surgner, Jr. sold 3,200 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.34, for a total transaction of $199,488.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.11% of the company’s stock.

Altria Company Profile

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.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Altria (NYSE:MO)

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