A number of research firms have changed their ratings and price targets for Altria Group (NYSE: MO):

  • 9/22/2016 – Altria Group was downgraded by analysts at Vetr from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating. They now have a $71.67 price target on the stock.
  • 9/21/2016 – Altria Group is now covered by analysts at Jefferies Group. They set a “hold” rating and a $70.00 price target on the stock.
  • 9/15/2016 – Altria Group had its price target lowered by analysts at Credit Agricole SA from $69.00 to $68.00. They now have an “outperform” rating on the stock.
  • 9/13/2016 – Altria Group was downgraded by analysts at Vetr from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating. They now have a $71.90 price target on the stock.
  • 9/12/2016 – Altria Group was upgraded by analysts at Vetr from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating. They now have a $71.87 price target on the stock.
  • 9/12/2016 – Altria Group is now covered by analysts at Citigroup Inc.. They set a “buy” rating and a $72.00 price target on the stock.
  • 8/15/2016 – Altria Group was downgraded by analysts at Vetr from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating. They now have a $72.40 price target on the stock.
  • 8/4/2016 – Altria Group was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating. They now have a $74.00 price target on the stock. According to Zacks, “Altria’s second-quarter 2016 earnings of $0.72 beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 1.25% and also increased from the prior-year quarter figure by 9.5% on strong performance by the leading premium brands in the core tobacco category. However sales missed expectaiton and slipped year over year due to soft sales in smokeable segment. We are encouraged as Altria’s subsidiary, Nu Mark LLC, expanded the distribution of MarkTen XL e-vapor products and Green Smoke e-cigarettes in several lead markets. This should drive sales going ahead. Overall, the company’s growing market share in the e-cigarette category and efforts to adapt to the evolving consumer trends and develop less harmful alternative tobacco products are encouraging. However, higher fees associated with litigations and the FDA’s anti-smoking campaigns are hurting profitability.”
  • 8/3/2016 – Altria Group was downgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating. According to Zacks, “Altria’s second-quarter 2016 earnings of $0.72 beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 1.25% and also increased from the prior-year quarter figure by 9.5% on strong performance by the leading premium brands in the core tobacco category. However sales missed expectaiton and slipped year over year due to soft sales in smokeable segment. We are encouraged as Altria’s subsidiary, Nu Mark LLC, expanded the distribution of MarkTen XL e-vapor products and Green Smoke e-cigarettes in several lead markets. This should drive sales going ahead. Overall, the company’s growing market share in the e-cigarette category and efforts to adapt to the evolving consumer trends and develop less harmful alternative tobacco products are encouraging. However, higher fees associated with litigations and the FDA’s anti-smoking campaigns are hurting profitability.”
  • 8/1/2016 – Altria Group was downgraded by analysts at Vetr from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating. They now have a $75.77 price target on the stock.
  • 8/1/2016 – Altria Group was given a new $73.00 price target on by analysts at Argus. They now have a “buy” rating on the stock.
  • 7/25/2016 – Altria Group was downgraded by analysts at Vetr from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating. They now have a $75.77 price target on the stock.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) traded down 0.36% during midday trading on Friday, hitting $63.89. 1,678,076 shares of the stock were exchanged. Altria Group has a 1-year low of $53.68 and a 1-year high of $70.15. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $65.56 and its 200 day moving average price is $64.91. The firm has a market capitalization of $124.84 billion, a P/E ratio of 22.18 and a beta of 0.48.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, July 27th. The company reported $0.81 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.80 by $0.01. Altria Group had a net margin of 22.05% and a return on equity of 198.82%. The company had revenue of $6.52 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.01 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.74 EPS. The firm’s revenue was down 1.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that Altria Group will post $3.05 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 11th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, September 15th will be paid a $0.61 dividend. This is a positive change from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.57. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, September 13th. This represents a $2.44 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.81%. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 84.72%.

In other Altria Group news, SVP Charles N. Whitaker sold 11,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $66.53, for a total value of $731,830.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, SVP James E. Dillard III sold 9,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $66.68, for a total transaction of $600,120.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.15% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

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.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:MO

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