First Fiduciary Investment Counsel Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (NASDAQ:WBA) in the second quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The firm purchased 218,025 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock, valued at approximately $13,085,000. Walgreens Boots Alliance makes up 2.5% of First Fiduciary Investment Counsel Inc.’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 21st largest position.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Hugh Johnson Advisors LLC lifted its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 11.0% in the 2nd quarter. Hugh Johnson Advisors LLC now owns 7,801 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $468,000 after purchasing an additional 773 shares during the last quarter. World Asset Management Inc lifted its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 1.4% in the 2nd quarter. World Asset Management Inc now owns 58,572 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $3,515,000 after purchasing an additional 807 shares during the last quarter. Sumitomo Life Insurance Co. lifted its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 4.5% in the 2nd quarter. Sumitomo Life Insurance Co. now owns 19,814 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $1,189,000 after purchasing an additional 850 shares during the last quarter. Buckley Wealth Management LLC lifted its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 10.4% in the 2nd quarter. Buckley Wealth Management LLC now owns 9,015 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $541,000 after purchasing an additional 850 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Mutual Advisors LLC lifted its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 18.7% in the 1st quarter. Mutual Advisors LLC now owns 5,520 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $361,000 after purchasing an additional 871 shares during the last quarter. 61.98% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Several brokerages recently weighed in on WBA. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday. Jefferies Financial Group downgraded shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and cut their price objective for the company from $85.00 to $65.00 in a research report on Friday, June 29th. Citigroup downgraded shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $69.00 price objective on the stock. in a research report on Monday, July 9th. Loop Capital lifted their price objective on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance to $80.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, June 29th. Finally, Robert W. Baird downgraded shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $80.00 price objective on the stock. in a research report on Friday, June 29th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have issued a hold rating, six have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. Walgreens Boots Alliance presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $76.61.

Walgreens Boots Alliance stock opened at $70.48 on Friday. The stock has a market cap of $68.22 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.82, a P/E/G ratio of 1.04 and a beta of 1.09. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.44, a quick ratio of 0.47 and a current ratio of 0.93. Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc has a 52 week low of $59.07 and a 52 week high of $83.74.

Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) last released its earnings results on Thursday, June 28th. The pharmacy operator reported $1.53 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.47 by $0.06. The firm had revenue of $34.33 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $34.15 billion. Walgreens Boots Alliance had a net margin of 3.36% and a return on equity of 21.22%. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s quarterly revenue was up 14.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.33 EPS. research analysts forecast that Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc will post 5.97 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, September 12th. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 20th were paid a dividend of $0.44 per share. This is a boost from Walgreens Boots Alliance’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.40. The ex-dividend date was Friday, August 17th. This represents a $1.76 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.50%. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 34.51%.

In other Walgreens Boots Alliance news, insider Stefano Pessina acquired 1,697,438 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, July 16th. The shares were bought at an average price of $63.92 per share, with a total value of $108,500,236.96. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director William C. Foote sold 2,736 shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $65.99, for a total transaction of $180,548.64. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 10,943 shares in the company, valued at approximately $722,128.57. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 14.80% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Walgreens Boots Alliance Company Profile

Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc operates as a pharmacy-led health and wellbeing company. It operates through three segments: Retail Pharmacy USA, Retail Pharmacy International, and Pharmaceutical Wholesale. The Retail Pharmacy USA segment sells prescription drugs and an assortment of general merchandise, including non-prescription drugs, beauty products, photo finishing, seasonal merchandise, greeting cards, and convenience foods through its retail drugstores and convenient care clinics.

Further Reading: Earnings Per Share

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA)

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