Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. increased its position in Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 4.3% during the 3rd quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The firm owned 85,808 shares of the company’s stock after acquiring an additional 3,524 shares during the quarter. Cullen Frost Bankers Inc.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $5,175,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other large investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA purchased a new stake in Altria Group during the third quarter worth $103,000. IMA Wealth Inc. purchased a new stake in Altria Group during the second quarter worth $106,000. BerganKDV Wealth Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Altria Group during the 2nd quarter valued at $123,000. BDO Wealth Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Altria Group by 165.5% during the 2nd quarter. BDO Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 2,222 shares of the company’s stock valued at $126,000 after purchasing an additional 1,385 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Landaas & Co. WI ADV purchased a new stake in shares of Altria Group during the 2nd quarter valued at $137,000. 63.23% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Several analysts have recently commented on the company. ValuEngine upgraded Altria Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 23rd. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $75.00 price objective on Altria Group and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 23rd. Argus increased their price objective on Altria Group from $70.00 to $71.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Monday. Citigroup increased their price objective on Altria Group from $59.00 to $67.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, September 21st. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein assumed coverage on Altria Group in a report on Tuesday, October 23rd. They set a “market perform” rating for the company. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, nine have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. Altria Group has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $69.87.
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last released its earnings results on Thursday, October 25th. The company reported $1.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the 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 firm had revenue of $5.29 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.22 billion. On average, analysts expect that Altria Group Inc will post 3.99 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, October 10th. Investors of record on Friday, September 14th were given a $0.80 dividend. This represents a $3.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.86%. This is an increase from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.70. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, September 13th. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio is presently 94.67%.
In related news, Director Dinyar S. Devitre sold 3,165 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $58.44, for a total value of $184,962.60. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 0.11% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
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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