Traders sold shares of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) on strength during trading hours on Tuesday. $43.81 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $65.78 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $21.97 million out of the stock. Of all stocks tracked, Wal-Mart Stores had the 0th highest net out-flow for the day. Wal-Mart Stores traded up $0.81 for the day and closed at $79.18

WMT has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) set a $84.00 target price on Wal-Mart Stores and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 26th. Zacks Investment Research raised Wal-Mart Stores from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $82.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Thursday, July 13th. Jefferies Group LLC set a $88.00 target price on Wal-Mart Stores and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, July 17th. Vetr raised Wal-Mart Stores from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $79.40 target price on the stock in a research report on Monday, May 15th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets raised Wal-Mart Stores from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and lifted their target price for the stock from $63.00 to $80.00 in a research report on Friday, May 19th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have assigned a hold rating, fourteen have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $80.25.

The stock has a market capitalization of $240.88 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.24 and a beta of 0.30. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $79.42 and its 200-day moving average price is $75.72. Wal-Mart Stores also was the recipient of some unusual options trading activity on Monday. Stock traders acquired 5,107 put options on the company. This represents an increase of 351% compared to the typical daily volume of 1,132 put options.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last released its earnings results on Thursday, August 17th. The retailer reported $1.08 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.07 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $123.40 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $121.86 billion. Wal-Mart Stores had a net margin of 2.60% and a return on equity of 16.87%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 2.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.07 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts expect that Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. will post $4.37 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, Director S Robson Walton sold 129,628 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.44, for a total value of $10,427,276.32. Following the sale, the director now owns 3,344,956 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $269,068,260.64. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 474,042 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.04, for a total transaction of $37,942,321.68. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 10,048,580 shares in the company, valued at approximately $804,288,343.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 9,296,629 shares of company stock worth $735,219,988. Corporate insiders own 51.39% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of WMT. FMR LLC raised its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 45.3% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 17,982,372 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $1,360,906,000 after purchasing an additional 5,608,785 shares during the period. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board raised its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 161.4% in the first quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 3,297,419 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $237,678,000 after purchasing an additional 2,035,800 shares during the period. Alliancebernstein L.P. raised its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 42.6% in the second quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 5,745,493 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $434,819,000 after purchasing an additional 1,716,422 shares during the period. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC raised its position in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 52.9% in the second quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 4,883,390 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $369,565,000 after purchasing an additional 1,689,364 shares during the period. Finally, Karp Capital Management Corp bought a new stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores in the first quarter valued at approximately $111,777,000. 29.93% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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About Wal-Mart Stores

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.