BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 1.8% during the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 141,022,748 shares of the company’s stock after acquiring an additional 2,433,533 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. owned approximately 7.51% of Altria Group worth $8,505,083,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in the company. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA bought a new position in Altria Group in the third quarter worth $103,000. IMA Wealth Inc. bought a new position in Altria Group in the second quarter worth $106,000. BerganKDV Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in Altria Group in the second quarter worth $123,000. BDO Wealth Advisors LLC lifted its position in Altria Group by 165.5% in the second quarter. BDO Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 2,222 shares of the company’s stock worth $126,000 after purchasing an additional 1,385 shares during the period. Finally, Landaas & Co. WI ADV bought a new position in Altria Group in the second quarter worth $137,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 63.79% of the company’s stock.

Altria Group stock opened at $54.39 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.77, a current ratio of 0.60 and a quick ratio of 0.36. Altria Group Inc has a 12-month low of $53.91 and a 12-month high of $74.38. The stock has a market capitalization of $104.63 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.09, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.58 and a beta of 0.40.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 25th. The company reported $1.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.07 by $0.01. Altria Group had a return on equity of 48.31% and a net margin of 42.13%. The business had revenue of $5.29 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.22 billion. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that Altria Group Inc will post 3.99 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Several research analysts recently commented on MO shares. Zacks Investment Research raised Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $70.00 target price for the company in a research report on Tuesday, September 25th. Jefferies Financial Group cut Altria Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $61.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Friday, August 24th. Sanford C. Bernstein initiated coverage on Altria Group in a research report on Tuesday, October 16th. They issued a “market perform” rating for the company. ValuEngine raised Altria Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 23rd. Finally, Bank of America set a $70.00 price objective on Altria Group and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, September 13th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating, eight have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $69.87.

In related news, Director Dinyar S. Devitre sold 3,165 shares of Altria Group stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $58.44, for a total value of $184,962.60. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Insiders own 0.11% of the company’s stock.

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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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