Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Altria Group (NYSE:MO) by 1.3% during the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 119,144 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 1,501 shares during the quarter. Cullen Frost Bankers Inc.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $8,872,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Sterling Investment Advisors Ltd. grew its holdings in Altria Group by 133.3% in the first quarter. Sterling Investment Advisors Ltd. now owns 1,400 shares of the company’s stock worth $100,000 after purchasing an additional 800 shares during the period. Perigon Wealth Management LLC grew its holdings in Altria Group by 4.7% in the first quarter. Perigon Wealth Management LLC now owns 1,641 shares of the company’s stock worth $118,000 after purchasing an additional 74 shares during the period. Proficio Capital Partners LLC grew its holdings in Altria Group by 97.4% in the first quarter. Proficio Capital Partners LLC now owns 1,664 shares of the company’s stock worth $121,000 after purchasing an additional 821 shares during the period. Advantage Investment Management LLC grew its holdings in Altria Group by 1.9% in the first quarter. Advantage Investment Management LLC now owns 1,752 shares of the company’s stock worth $125,000 after purchasing an additional 32 shares during the period. Finally, American Beacon Advisors Inc. purchased a new stake in Altria Group in the first quarter worth about $164,000. Institutional investors own 61.82% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Altria Group (NYSE MO) opened at 65.05 on Monday. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $63.30 and its 200-day moving average is $69.51. Altria Group has a 12-month low of $60.01 and a 12-month high of $77.79. The stock has a market cap of $125.42 billion, a PE ratio of 8.58 and a beta of 0.64.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The company reported $0.85 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.86 by ($0.01). Altria Group had a net margin of 56.98% and a return on equity of 59.50%. The business had revenue of $4.37 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.02 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.81 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.2% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts expect that Altria Group will post $3.27 EPS for the current year.

Altria Group declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share repurchase program on Thursday, July 27th that permits the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the company to reacquire up to 0.7% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are often an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, October 10th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 15th were given a $0.66 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, September 14th. This represents a $2.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.06%. This is an increase from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.61. Altria Group’s payout ratio is presently 34.83%.

In other news, CEO Martin J. Barrington sold 15,300 shares of Altria Group stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $65.03, for a total value of $994,959.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 701,074 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $45,590,842.22. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Dinyar S. Devitre sold 32,000 shares of Altria Group stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.22, for a total transaction of $1,959,040.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.11% of the stock is owned by insiders.

MO has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Vetr cut shares of Altria Group from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $69.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Wednesday, September 6th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $71.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Wednesday, October 11th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Altria Group from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Monday, July 31st. Royal Bank Of Canada upgraded shares of Altria Group from an “underperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and set a $62.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Monday, July 31st. Finally, Cowen and Company restated a “hold” rating on shares of Altria Group in a report on Sunday, September 10th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $71.99.

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Altria Group Profile

Altria Group, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s segments include smokeable products, smokeless products and wine. The Company’s subsidiaries include Philip Morris USA Inc (PM USA), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes in the United States; John Middleton Co (Middleton), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of machine-made cigars and pipe tobacco, and UST LLC (UST), which, through its subsidiaries, including U.S.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Altria Group (NYSE:MO)

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