Philip Morris International (PM) Stock Rating Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Thursday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Philip Morris’ shares have outpaced the industry in the past month. The company is benefiting from advancement in RRPs arena, which was fuelled further when the FDA allowed the company to sell IQOS heating devices. Further, strong growth in heated tobacco units aided the company’s top line in the first quarter of 2019. Additionally, efficient pricing boosted performance in the first quarter, which is expected to be a key catalyst in the forthcoming periods. However, headwinds in the cigarette category are a concern. Markedly, revenues in the combustible unit declined year over year in the first quarter, while shipment volumes were flat. We note that stringent policies and fading consumer interests are weighing on cigarette sales. Further, management expects sales volumes in the unit to continue declining in 2019.”

Several other brokerages also recently weighed in on PM. Citigroup upped their target price on shares of Philip Morris International from $90.00 to $102.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, March 25th. ValuEngine raised shares of Philip Morris International from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, March 15th. Bank of America reaffirmed a “sell” rating and issued a $74.00 target price on shares of Philip Morris International in a report on Tuesday, March 26th. UBS Group raised shares of Philip Morris International from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their target price for the stock from $86.00 to $101.00 in a report on Wednesday, February 27th. Finally, Morgan Stanley upped their target price on shares of Philip Morris International from $88.00 to $94.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Monday, April 15th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Philip Morris International currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $92.57.

Shares of PM stock opened at $85.49 on Thursday. Philip Morris International has a 1 year low of $64.67 and a 1 year high of $92.74. The firm has a market cap of $133.43 billion, a PE ratio of 16.76, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.03 and a beta of 0.93.

Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 18th. The company reported $1.09 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.99 by $0.10. The firm had revenue of $6.75 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $6.76 billion. Philip Morris International had a net margin of 9.74% and a negative return on equity of 78.74%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 2.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $1.00 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts forecast that Philip Morris International will post 5.16 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Philip Morris International news, insider Mario Masseroli sold 1,200 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, April 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $84.32, for a total value of $101,184.00. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, Director Louis C. Camilleri sold 70,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, April 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $83.54, for a total transaction of $5,847,800.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.21% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund raised its stake in Philip Morris International by 6,541.5% during the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 11,319,091 shares of the company’s stock worth $170,000 after purchasing an additional 11,148,661 shares during the period. Morgan Stanley raised its position in Philip Morris International by 29.1% during the 1st quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 29,487,644 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,606,413,000 after buying an additional 6,642,051 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in Philip Morris International by 5.1% during the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 95,049,723 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,345,520,000 after buying an additional 4,576,645 shares during the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC raised its position in Philip Morris International by 22.3% during the 1st quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 22,902,599 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,021,601,000 after buying an additional 4,178,012 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG raised its position in Philip Morris International by 50.5% during the 4th quarter. Deutsche Bank AG now owns 11,054,233 shares of the company’s stock worth $737,970,000 after buying an additional 3,710,763 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.87% of the company’s stock.

Philip Morris International Company Profile

Philip Morris International Inc, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, other nicotine-containing products, and smoke-free products and related electronic devices and accessories. The company offers IQOS smoke-free products, including heated tobacco and nicotine-containing vapor products under the HEETS, HEETS Marlboro, and HEETS FROM MARLBORO brands, as well as the Marlboro HeatSticks and Parliament HeatSticks brands.

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