MEMBERS Trust Co bought a new position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) during the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund bought 9,629 shares of the retailer’s stock, valued at approximately $694,000.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. SNS Financial Group LLC boosted its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 88.4% in the fourth quarter. SNS Financial Group LLC now owns 7,026 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $486,000 after buying an additional 3,297 shares in the last quarter. Patriot Financial Group Insurance Agency LLC purchased a new position in Wal-Mart Stores during the fourth quarter worth approximately $354,000. Vident Investment Advisory LLC boosted its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 0.7% in the fourth quarter. Vident Investment Advisory LLC now owns 32,959 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $2,278,000 after buying an additional 234 shares in the last quarter. Dodge & Cox purchased a new position in Wal-Mart Stores during the fourth quarter worth approximately $1,503,922,000. Finally, River & Mercantile Asset Management LLP purchased a new position in Wal-Mart Stores during the fourth quarter worth approximately $1,604,000. 30.09% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) traded down 0.312% during trading on Thursday, hitting $81.355. 1,761,692 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $77.17 and a 200-day moving average price of $74.00. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. has a one year low of $65.28 and a one year high of $81.99. The stock has a market cap of $245.24 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.473 and a beta of 0.29. Wal-Mart Stores also was the recipient of unusually large options trading activity on Monday. Investors acquired 5,107 put options on the stock. This is an increase of approximately 351% compared to the typical volume of 1,132 put options.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 18th. The retailer reported $1.00 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the 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 firm had revenue of $116.53 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $117.01 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.98 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 1.3% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts expect that Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. will post $4.36 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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A number of research analysts recently commented on WMT shares. KeyCorp reissued an “overweight” rating and issued a $90.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Wednesday, April 19th. Zacks Investment Research raised Wal-Mart Stores from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $84.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, April 25th. MKM Partners reissued a “neutral” rating and issued a $77.00 target price (up previously from $72.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Wednesday, April 26th. Pacific Crest cut Wal-Mart Stores to a “hold” rating in a research note on Sunday, April 30th. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada reissued a “sell” rating and issued a $67.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Tuesday, May 2nd. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have assigned a hold rating and fifteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Wal-Mart Stores currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $78.86.

In other news, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 2,576,324 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.65, for a total value of $202,627,882.60. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 6,748,580 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $530,775,817. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Jacqueline P. Canney sold 1,322 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 23rd. The stock was 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 approximately $1,878,502.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 23,006,720 shares of company stock valued at $1,816,131,604 in the last ninety days. Corporate 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.

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

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