BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed their market weight rating on shares of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) in a research report released on Thursday.

A number of other analysts also recently issued reports on the company. 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 note 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 for the company in a research note 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 note on Monday, July 17th. Cowen and Company reaffirmed an outperform rating and issued a $86.00 target price (up from $83.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Monday, June 5th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus set a $79.00 target price on Wal-Mart Stores and gave the stock a hold rating in a research note on Friday, May 19th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have issued a hold rating, fourteen have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. Wal-Mart Stores presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $80.25.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE WMT) opened at 80.38 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $241.78 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.31 and a beta of 0.30. Wal-Mart Stores has a 1-year low of $65.28 and a 1-year high of $81.99. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $79.86 and its 200 day moving average is $76.06.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, August 17th. The retailer reported $1.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.07 by $0.01. Wal-Mart Stores had a return on equity of 16.87% and a net margin of 2.60%. The business had revenue of $123.40 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $121.86 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.07 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.1% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts anticipate that Wal-Mart Stores will post $4.38 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other Wal-Mart Stores news, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 1,652,342 shares of Wal-Mart Stores stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $79.35, for a total transaction of $131,113,337.70. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 6,748,580 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $535,499,823. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, insider David Cheesewright sold 25,729 shares of Wal-Mart Stores stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, June 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $76.65, for a total value of $1,972,127.85. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 7,948,971 shares of company stock worth $628,583,326. 51.39% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Winfield Associates Inc. increased its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 5.8% during the second quarter. Winfield Associates Inc. now owns 1,373 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $104,000 after buying an additional 75 shares during the period. TrimTabs Asset Management LLC increased its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 89.2% during the first quarter. TrimTabs Asset Management LLC now owns 1,476 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $106,000 after buying an additional 696 shares during the period. Genovese Burford & Brothers Wealth & Retirement Plan Management LLC increased its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 3.3% during the second quarter. Genovese Burford & Brothers Wealth & Retirement Plan Management LLC now owns 1,429 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $108,000 after buying an additional 45 shares during the period. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. increased its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 456.9% during the second quarter. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. now owns 1,526 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $115,000 after buying an additional 1,252 shares during the period. Finally, Hudock Capital Group LLC increased its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 0.4% during the second quarter. Hudock Capital Group LLC now owns 1,847 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $139,000 after buying an additional 7 shares during the period. 30.21% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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.

Analyst Recommendations for Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT)

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