Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. increased its stake in shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ:WBA) by 2.7% during the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 159,973 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock after buying an additional 4,131 shares during the period. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.’s holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance were worth $13,286,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Other large investors also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 72.9% in the first quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 482,962 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $40,115,000 after buying an additional 203,635 shares in the last quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD increased its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 9.3% in the first quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD now owns 75,821 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $6,296,000 after buying an additional 6,462 shares in the last quarter. Welch & Forbes LLC increased its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 4.8% in the first quarter. Welch & Forbes LLC now owns 96,882 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $8,046,000 after buying an additional 4,453 shares in the last quarter. SpiderRock Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance during the first quarter valued at about $301,000. Finally, Founders Capital Management LLC increased its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 1.7% in the first quarter. Founders Capital Management LLC now owns 71,991 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $5,979,000 after buying an additional 1,180 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 61.17% of the company’s stock.

Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ WBA) traded down 0.602% on Thursday, reaching $80.791. The company had a trading volume of 802,522 shares. The stock has a market cap of $86.45 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.402 and a beta of 1.25. Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. has a one year low of $75.18 and a one year high of $89.69. The company has a 50-day moving average of $78.91 and a 200 day moving average of $82.32.

Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, June 29th. The pharmacy operator reported $1.33 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.30 by $0.03. Walgreens Boots Alliance had a return on equity of 17.34% and a net margin of 3.69%. The business had revenue of $30.12 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $29.72 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.18 EPS. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s quarterly revenue was up 2.1% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts predict that Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. will post $5.01 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 12th. Stockholders of record on Friday, August 18th will be issued a $0.40 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 16th. This is a boost from Walgreens Boots Alliance’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.38. This represents a $1.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.97%. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s dividend payout ratio is presently 37.78%.

Walgreens Boots Alliance announced that its board has approved a share buyback program on Thursday, June 29th that allows the company to buyback $5.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the pharmacy operator to repurchase up to 5.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are generally an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

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WBA has been the topic of several analyst reports. Needham & Company LLC upgraded Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $94.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Friday, June 30th. Pivotal Research set a $85.00 price objective on Walgreens Boots Alliance and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Sunday, July 2nd. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 14th. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) restated a “neutral” rating and set a $77.00 price objective (down from $89.00) on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a report on Wednesday, June 28th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC dropped their price objective on Walgreens Boots Alliance from $95.00 to $80.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, May 31st. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and fourteen have given a buy rating to the company. Walgreens Boots Alliance has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $90.69.

In other news, Director William C. Foote sold 2,736 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, July 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $79.79, for a total value of $218,305.44. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 19,151 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,528,058.29. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Corporate insiders own 13.50% of the company’s stock.

About Walgreens Boots Alliance

Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc (Walgreens Boots Alliance) is a holding company. The Company is a global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise. Walgreens Boots Alliance operates through three divisions, including Retail Pharmacy USA, Retail Pharmacy International and Pharmaceutical Wholesale. The Company’s products are marketed under a number of brands, which include No7, the Botanics range, Almus (generic medicines), Boots Pharmaceuticals and Soap & Glory (bathing and beauty brand).

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA)

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