Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) Shares Bought by Crawford Investment Counsel Inc.

Crawford Investment Counsel Inc. boosted its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) by 5.6% during the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 281,961 shares of the retailer’s stock after buying an additional 15,042 shares during the period. Crawford Investment Counsel Inc.’s holdings in Wal-Mart Stores were worth $20,324,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other large investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Tyers Asset Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores during the fourth quarter worth $57,735,000. Ullmann Financial Group Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores during the fourth quarter worth $225,000. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 25.5% in the fourth quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 447,073 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $30,902,000 after buying an additional 90,906 shares during the last quarter. Zurich Insurance Group Ltd FI raised its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 8.0% in the fourth quarter. Zurich Insurance Group Ltd FI now owns 225,889 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $15,613,000 after buying an additional 16,644 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Guardian Capital Advisors LP raised its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 3.2% in the fourth quarter. Guardian Capital Advisors LP now owns 66,816 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $4,624,000 after buying an additional 2,058 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 30.09% of the company’s stock.

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT) opened at 81.61 on Thursday. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. has a 12 month low of $65.28 and a 12 month high of $81.99. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $76.65 and its 200-day moving average is $73.67. The firm has a market cap of $246.01 billion, a PE ratio of 18.53 and a beta of 0.29. Wal-Mart Stores also saw some unusual options trading activity on Monday. Traders acquired 5,107 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 351% compared to the typical volume of 1,132 put options.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, May 18th. The retailer reported $1.00 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.96 by $0.04. Wal-Mart Stores had a net margin of 2.79% and a return on equity of 16.96%. The company had revenue of $116.53 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $117.01 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.98 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.3% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts expect that Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. will post $4.36 earnings per share for the current year.

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WMT has been the topic of a number of analyst reports. KeyCorp restated an “overweight” rating and issued a $90.00 price objective on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a report on Wednesday, April 19th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $84.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Tuesday, April 25th. MKM Partners reiterated a “neutral” rating and set a $77.00 price target (up from $72.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Wednesday, April 26th. Pacific Crest lowered shares of Wal-Mart Stores to a “hold” rating in a research note on Sunday, April 30th. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada reiterated a “sell” rating and set a $67.00 price target on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Tuesday, May 2nd. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have issued a hold rating and fifteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. Wal-Mart Stores has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $78.86.

In other Wal-Mart Stores news, insider Jacqueline P. Canney sold 1,322 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.75, for a total transaction of $104,107.50. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 23,854 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,878,502.50. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 2,576,324 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.65, for a total transaction of $202,627,882.60. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 6,748,580 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $530,775,817. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 23,006,720 shares of company stock valued at $1,816,131,604. Insiders own 51.39% of the company’s stock.

Wal-Mart Stores Company Profile

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc is engaged in the operation of retail, wholesale and other units in various formats around the world. The Company operates through three segments: Walmart U.S., Walmart International and Sam’s Club. The Walmart U.S. segment includes its mass merchant concept in the United States operating under the Walmart or Wal-Mart brands, as well as digital retail.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT)

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