Salem Investment Counselors Inc. lessened its stake in shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (NASDAQ:WBA) by 0.7% in the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 163,846 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock after selling 1,122 shares during the quarter. Walgreens Boots Alliance comprises approximately 0.9% of Salem Investment Counselors Inc.’s portfolio, making the stock its 27th biggest position. Salem Investment Counselors Inc.’s holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance were worth $9,834,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Sei Investments Co. grew its holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 100.9% during the second quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 349,451 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock worth $20,970,000 after acquiring an additional 175,551 shares during the period. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. grew its holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 4.4% during the second quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 3,563,249 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock worth $213,849,000 after acquiring an additional 150,763 shares during the period. Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC grew its holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 12.7% during the second quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC now owns 198,734 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock worth $11,927,000 after acquiring an additional 22,356 shares during the period. Bailard Inc. acquired a new position in Walgreens Boots Alliance during the second quarter worth $290,000. Finally, Prentiss Smith & Co. Inc. grew its holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 1,125.9% during the second quarter. Prentiss Smith & Co. Inc. now owns 120,913 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock worth $7,257,000 after acquiring an additional 111,050 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 61.98% of the company’s stock.

Walgreens Boots Alliance stock opened at $70.21 on Friday. The company has a current ratio of 0.93, a quick ratio of 0.47 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.44. The firm has a market capitalization of $69.85 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.84, a PEG ratio of 1.07 and a beta of 1.09. Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc has a fifty-two week low of $59.07 and a fifty-two week high of $83.74.

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

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, September 12th. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 20th were issued a $0.44 dividend. This is a positive change from Walgreens Boots Alliance’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.40. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, August 17th. This represents a $1.76 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.51%. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s dividend payout ratio is 34.51%.

A number of research analysts recently weighed in on WBA shares. TheStreet raised Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “c+” rating to a “b” rating in a report on Wednesday. Zacks Investment Research raised Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Tuesday, June 19th. Mizuho set a $77.00 price objective on Walgreens Boots Alliance and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, May 29th. Loop Capital upped their price objective on Walgreens Boots Alliance to $80.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 29th. Finally, BidaskClub raised Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 18th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have issued a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $76.61.

In related news, Director William C. Foote sold 2,736 shares of the stock in a transaction 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 sale, the director now owns 10,943 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $722,128.57. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, COO Ornella Barra acquired 1,700,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, July 16th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $65.15 per share, for a total transaction of $110,755,000.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 14.80% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

About Walgreens Boots Alliance

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.

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

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