Valeo Financial Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 3.7% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 28,726 shares of the company’s stock after acquiring an additional 1,015 shares during the period. Valeo Financial Advisors LLC’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $1,695,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in MO. IMA Wealth Inc. acquired a new position in Altria Group in the second quarter valued at $106,000. BerganKDV Wealth Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Altria Group during the second quarter worth about $123,000. Landaas & Co. WI ADV acquired a new position in shares of Altria Group during the second quarter worth about $137,000. Centerpoint Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Altria Group by 73.7% during the first quarter. Centerpoint Advisors LLC now owns 2,355 shares of the company’s stock worth $147,000 after acquiring an additional 999 shares during the period. Finally, Point72 Asia Hong Kong Ltd acquired a new position in shares of Altria Group during the first quarter worth about $147,000. 63.27% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

In other Altria Group news, Director Dinyar S. Devitre sold 3,165 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.44, for a total value of $184,962.60. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. 0.11% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

MO has been the topic of a number of recent analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, May 14th. ValuEngine lowered shares of Altria Group from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Monday, May 14th. Jefferies Financial Group set a $70.00 price target on shares of Altria Group and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, June 1st. Consumer Edge initiated coverage on shares of Altria Group in a research note on Monday, June 11th. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $69.31 price target on the stock. Finally, Morgan Stanley dropped their price target on shares of Altria Group from $65.00 to $63.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, June 26th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating, nine have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. Altria Group presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $71.01.

Shares of MO opened at $60.70 on Friday. Altria Group Inc has a twelve month low of $53.91 and a twelve month high of $74.38. The stock has a market cap of $114.34 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.96, a P/E/G ratio of 1.72 and a beta of 0.62. The company has a current ratio of 0.65, a quick ratio of 0.31 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.83.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 26th. The company reported $1.01 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.00 by $0.01. Altria Group had a net margin of 42.00% and a return on equity of 48.88%. The company had revenue of $4.88 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.02 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.85 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.7% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts anticipate that Altria Group Inc will post 4 EPS for the current year.

Altria Group announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock repurchase plan on Thursday, May 17th that allows the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to buy up to 1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are typically a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 14th will be issued a $0.80 dividend. This represents a $3.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 5.27%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 13th. This is an increase from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.70. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio is 82.84%.

About Altria Group

Altria Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, smokeless products, and wine in the United States. It offers cigarettes primarily under the Marlboro brand; cigars principally under the Black & Mild brand; and moist smokeless tobacco products under the Copenhagen, Skoal, Red Seal, and Husky brands.

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

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