Teacher Retirement System of Texas Purchases 390,886 Shares of Altria (MO)

Teacher Retirement System of Texas lifted its position in shares of Altria (NYSE:MO) by 38.7% during the 1st quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 1,402,070 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 390,886 shares during the quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas owned approximately 0.07% of Altria worth $87,377,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Several other large investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. First Manhattan Co. raised its position in shares of Altria by 22.8% during the fourth quarter. First Manhattan Co. now owns 1,125,517 shares of the company’s stock worth $80,373,000 after acquiring an additional 208,935 shares during the last quarter. Alley Co LLC raised its position in shares of Altria by 0.9% during the fourth quarter. Alley Co LLC now owns 102,997 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,355,000 after acquiring an additional 904 shares during the last quarter. Prime Capital Investment Advisors LLC bought a new stake in shares of Altria during the fourth quarter worth $1,044,000. Naples Global Advisors LLC raised its position in shares of Altria by 6.1% during the fourth quarter. Naples Global Advisors LLC now owns 23,255 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,661,000 after acquiring an additional 1,342 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Virtue Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Altria during the fourth quarter worth $1,049,000. 63.09% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Altria opened at $55.46 on Tuesday, according to Marketbeat Ratings. The stock has a market capitalization of $105.12 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.41, a P/E/G ratio of 1.62 and a beta of 0.63. The company has a quick ratio of 0.34, a current ratio of 0.65 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.85. Altria has a 12 month low of $53.91 and a 12 month high of $77.79.

Altria (NYSE:MO) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 26th. The company reported $0.95 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.93 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $4.67 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.63 billion. Altria had a return on equity of 49.92% and a net margin of 41.85%. The firm’s revenue was up 1.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.73 earnings per share. equities research analysts predict that Altria will post 4 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, July 10th. Investors of record on Friday, June 15th will be issued a $0.70 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, June 14th. This represents a $2.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 5.05%. Altria’s dividend payout ratio is presently 82.84%.

Altria declared that its board has authorized a stock repurchase program on Thursday, February 1st that permits the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

A number of equities research analysts have recently weighed in on MO shares. Vetr upgraded Altria from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $71.45 target price for the company in a research report on Monday, February 5th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Altria from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 target price for the company in a research report on Monday, April 9th. Deutsche Bank started coverage on Altria in a research report on Monday, March 26th. They set a “buy” rating and a $72.00 target price for the company. Jefferies Group restated a “buy” rating and set a $84.00 target price on shares of Altria in a research report on Thursday, March 15th. Finally, Argus restated a “buy” rating and set a $79.00 target price (up previously from $66.13) on shares of Altria in a research report on Wednesday, March 14th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating, ten have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $73.42.

In other news, CEO Brian W. Quigley sold 3,464 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.40, for a total transaction of $216,153.60. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, Director Mark Newman acquired 5,345 shares of Altria stock in a transaction dated Monday, April 30th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $56.19 per share, with a total value of $300,335.55. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 6,022 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $338,376.18. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.11% of the company’s stock.

Altria 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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