Investors purchased shares of Altria Group (NYSE:MO) on weakness during trading on Thursday. $92.79 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $67.40 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $25.39 million into the stock. Of all equities tracked, Altria Group had the 10th highest net in-flow for the day. Altria Group traded down ($0.16) for the day and closed at $68.92

A number of brokerages have recently commented on MO. Vetr upgraded shares of Altria Group from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $72.13 target price on the stock in a report on Wednesday, May 25th. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. restated a “neutral” rating and set a $69.00 target price (up previously from $64.00) on shares of Altria Group in a report on Friday. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $71.00 target price on the stock in a report on Monday, April 4th. Wells Fargo & Co. restated a “buy” rating on shares of Altria Group in a report on Monday, March 28th. Finally, Bank of America Corp. restated a “neutral” rating and set a $66.00 target price on shares of Altria Group in a report on Tuesday, May 17th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $68.19.

The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $66.73 and a 200 day moving average price of $62.65. The stock has a market cap of $134.81 billion and a P/E ratio of 24.87.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last released its earnings results on Thursday, April 28th. The company reported $0.72 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.04. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.63 EPS. The firm had revenue of $3.92 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.41 billion. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.3% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts expect that Altria Group will post $3.06 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, July 11th. Investors of record on Wednesday, June 15th were given a dividend of $0.565 per share. This represents a $2.26 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.28%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, June 13th.

In related news, CEO Brian W. Quigley sold 3,000 shares of Altria Group stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $63.66, for a total transaction of $190,980.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 23,246 shares in the company, valued at $1,479,840.36. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Director Nabil Y. Sakkab purchased 4,000 shares of Altria Group stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 20th. The shares were bought at an average price of $63.20 per share, with a total value of $252,800.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 31,630 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,999,016. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here.

A number of hedge funds and institutional investors recently made changes to their positions in MO. Morgan Stanley boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 6.3% in the fourth quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 21,038,153 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,224,631,000 after buying an additional 1,246,488 shares in the last quarter. First Trust Advisors LP boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 83.1% in the fourth quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 2,265,593 shares of the company’s stock valued at $131,880,000 after buying an additional 1,028,116 shares in the last quarter. NorthCoast Asset Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 3,774.3% in the fourth quarter. NorthCoast Asset Management LLC now owns 984,193 shares of the company’s stock valued at $57,290,000 after buying an additional 958,790 shares in the last quarter. Numeric Investors LLC boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 167.7% in the fourth quarter. Numeric Investors LLC now owns 1,290,430 shares of the company’s stock valued at $75,116,000 after buying an additional 808,300 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Cedar Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Altria Group during the fourth quarter valued at $32,467,000.

Altria Group, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s subsidiaries include Philip Morris USA Inc (PM USA), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes in the United States; John Middleton Co (Middleton), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of machine-made large cigars and pipe tobacco, and UST LLC (UST), which through its subsidiaries, including U.S.

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