Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. Grows Holdings in Altria Group Inc (MO)

Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. boosted its position in shares of Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 246.6% in the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 430,971 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 306,625 shares during the period. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $25,992,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Exeter Financial LLC grew its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 8.7% in the 2nd quarter. Exeter Financial LLC now owns 20,414 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,159,000 after acquiring an additional 1,638 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC bought a new position in shares of Altria Group in the 2nd quarter valued at about $20,143,000. Independence Bank of Kentucky grew its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 13.2% in the 2nd quarter. Independence Bank of Kentucky now owns 14,488 shares of the company’s stock valued at $823,000 after acquiring an additional 1,685 shares in the last quarter. Private Advisor Group LLC grew its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 86.2% in the 2nd quarter. Private Advisor Group LLC now owns 222,215 shares of the company’s stock valued at $12,456,000 after acquiring an additional 102,859 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BKD Wealth Advisors LLC grew its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 8.8% in the 3rd quarter. BKD Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 13,777 shares of the company’s stock valued at $831,000 after acquiring an additional 1,117 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 63.33% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE:MO opened at $65.37 on Friday. Altria Group Inc has a 52-week low of $53.91 and a 52-week high of $74.38. The stock has a market capitalization of $121.89 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.42, a PEG ratio of 1.84 and a beta of 0.40. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.77, a current ratio of 0.60 and a quick ratio of 0.36.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, October 25th. The company reported $1.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.07 by $0.01. Altria Group had a net margin of 42.13% and a return on equity of 48.31%. The business had revenue of $5.29 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.22 billion. On average, sell-side analysts expect that Altria Group Inc will post 3.99 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, October 10th. Investors of record on Friday, September 14th were paid a $0.80 dividend. This is an increase from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.70. This represents a $3.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.90%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, September 13th. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 94.67%.

MO has been the subject of several analyst reports. Argus raised their price objective on Altria Group from $70.00 to $71.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, October 29th. Sanford C. Bernstein initiated coverage on Altria Group in a report on Tuesday, October 23rd. They issued a “market perform” rating for the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $70.00 price objective for the company in a report on Tuesday, September 25th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Altria Group from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 15th. Finally, Bank of America set a $70.00 target price on shares of Altria Group and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, September 13th. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eight have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. Altria Group currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $69.87.

In other Altria Group news, Director Dinyar S. Devitre sold 3,165 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.44, for a total transaction of $184,962.60. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Company insiders own 0.11% of the company’s stock.

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Altria Group 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.

Read More: Preferred Stock

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Altria Group (NYSE:MO)

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