OLD Mutual Customised Solutions Proprietary Ltd. raised its stake in Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) by 10.5% during the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 30,595 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock after buying an additional 2,895 shares during the period. OLD Mutual Customised Solutions Proprietary Ltd.’s holdings in Lowe’s Companies were worth $2,515,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the company. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its position in Lowe’s Companies by 4.3% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 63,871,103 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $5,250,843,000 after buying an additional 2,650,045 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in shares of Lowe’s Companies by 1,757.3% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 61,377,883 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $5,045,875,000 after buying an additional 58,073,138 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Lowe’s Companies by 8.2% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 8,848,938 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $726,481,000 after buying an additional 671,581 shares in the last quarter. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC boosted its position in shares of Lowe’s Companies by 11.5% in the first quarter. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC now owns 8,249,599 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $678,200,000 after buying an additional 852,426 shares in the last quarter. Finally, OppenheimerFunds Inc. boosted its position in shares of Lowe’s Companies by 204.0% in the first quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 8,018,171 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $659,174,000 after buying an additional 5,380,759 shares in the last quarter. 74.70% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE LOW) traded up 0.32% during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $77.26. 3,090,052 shares of the stock were exchanged. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $76.69 and its 200 day moving average is $79.41. The firm has a market cap of $65.22 billion, a P/E ratio of 24.23 and a beta of 1.08. Lowe’s Companies, Inc. has a 12 month low of $64.87 and a 12 month high of $86.25.

Lowe’s Companies (NYSE:LOW) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 24th. The home improvement retailer reported $1.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.06 by $0.03. Lowe’s Companies had a return on equity of 56.78% and a net margin of 4.22%. The firm had revenue of $16.86 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $16.99 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.87 EPS. Lowe’s Companies’s quarterly revenue was up 10.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that Lowe’s Companies, Inc. will post $4.62 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, August 9th. Investors of record on Wednesday, July 26th were given a dividend of $0.41 per share. The ex-dividend date was Monday, July 24th. This represents a $1.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.12%. This is an increase from Lowe’s Companies’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.35. Lowe’s Companies’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 51.57%.

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Several brokerages have recently issued reports on LOW. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Lowe’s Companies from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $88.00 target price on the stock in a report on Friday. BidaskClub cut shares of Lowe’s Companies from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Monday, July 24th. Wolfe Research restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $94.00 target price (down previously from $95.00) on shares of Lowe’s Companies in a report on Sunday, May 28th. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) cut their target price on shares of Lowe’s Companies from $97.00 to $96.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, May 25th. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein restated an “underperform” rating and issued a $69.00 target price on shares of Lowe’s Companies in a report on Wednesday, July 12th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and sixteen have given a buy rating to the company. Lowe’s Companies currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $85.23.

In related news, insider Richard D. Maltsbarger sold 11,672 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $80.20, for a total transaction of $936,094.40. Following the sale, the insider now owns 37,716 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,024,823.20. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. 0.11% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

About Lowe’s Companies

Lowe’s Companies, Inc (Lowe’s) is a home improvement retailer. The Company operates approximately 1,860 home improvement and hardware stores, representing approximately 200 million square feet of retail selling space. The Company operates approximately 1,800 stores located across over 50 states in the United States, including approximately 80 Orchard Supply Hardware (Orchard) stores in California and Oregon, as well as approximately 40 stores in Canada and over 10 stores in Mexico.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Lowe`s Companies (NYSE:LOW)

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