Traders bought shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) on weakness during trading on Friday. $136.83 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $53.79 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $83.04 million into the stock. Of all stocks tracked, Wal-Mart Stores had the 16th highest net in-flow for the day. Wal-Mart Stores traded down ($0.03) for the day and closed at $73.67

A number of research analysts have recently issued reports on WMT shares. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. upped their price target on Wal-Mart Stores from $62.00 to $66.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 6th. Barclays PLC reiterated an “equal weight” rating and set a $70.00 price objective (up previously from $61.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research report on Wednesday, March 30th. Royal Bank Of Canada set a $66.00 price objective on Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, May 9th. Independent Research GmbH set a $72.00 price objective on Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, April 15th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “sell” rating and set a $55.00 price objective on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research report on Tuesday, May 10th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-three have assigned a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. Wal-Mart Stores presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $69.02.

The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $71.96 and its 200 day moving average price is $67.95. The company has a market cap of $229.60 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.28.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, May 19th. The retailer reported $0.98 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.88 by $0.10. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.03 earnings per share. The company had revenue of $115.90 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $112.68 billion. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up .9% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts anticipate that Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will post $4.26 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, EVP Rosalind G. Brewer sold 10,794 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, June 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $71.65, for a total value of $773,390.10. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 285,749 shares in the company, valued at $20,473,915.85. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director S Robson Walton sold 971,842 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, June 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $71.29, for a total value of $69,282,616.18. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 1,987,604 shares in the company, valued at $141,696,289.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of hedge funds and institutional investors have added to or reduced their stakes in WMT. Flippin Bruce & Porter Inc. boosted its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 3.9% in the fourth quarter. Flippin Bruce & Porter Inc. now owns 113,967 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $6,986,000 after buying an additional 4,242 shares in the last quarter. Morningstar Investment Services LLC boosted its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 74.4% in the fourth quarter. Morningstar Investment Services LLC now owns 200,850 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $12,312,000 after buying an additional 85,652 shares in the last quarter. Gluskin Sheff & Assoc Inc. acquired a new position in Wal-Mart Stores during the fourth quarter worth approximately $3,759,000. Foresters Investment Management Company Inc. boosted its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 6.0% in the fourth quarter. Foresters Investment Management Company Inc. now owns 314,120 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $19,256,000 after buying an additional 17,800 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 39.6% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 5,836,543 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $357,803,000 after buying an additional 1,654,378 shares in the last quarter.

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc is engaged in the operation of retail, wholesale and other units in various formats around the world. The Company offers an assortment of merchandise and services at everyday low prices (EDLP). The Company’s operations are conducted in three segments: Walmart U.S., Walmart International and Sam’s Club.

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