Zacks Investment Research Lowers Philip Morris International (PM) to Sell

Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Philip Morris’ shares have declined in the past one month, thanks to persistent headwinds in the company’s cigarette category. Markedly, revenues in the combustible unit declined year over year in the first quarter of 2019, while shipment volumes were flat. We note that stringent policies and fading consumer interests are weighing upon cigarette sales.  Further, management expects sales volumes in the unit to continue declining in 2019. Moreover, unfavorable currency movements are a viable threat. Nevertheless, advancement in RRPs arena is encouraging. In fact, strong growth in heated tobacco units boosted the company’s top line in the first quarter. The company is on track with expansion of RRPs. Further, efficient pricing boosted performance in the first quarter, which is expected to be a key growth catalyst in the forthcoming periods.”

Several other equities research analysts have also commented on the stock. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Philip Morris International from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, March 15th. Bank of America restated a “sell” rating and set a $74.00 target price on shares of Philip Morris International in a research report on Tuesday, March 26th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $100.00 target price on shares of Philip Morris International and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, February 8th. Morgan Stanley boosted their target price on shares of Philip Morris International from $88.00 to $94.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Monday, April 15th. Finally, UBS Group upgraded shares of Philip Morris International from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their target price for the stock from $86.00 to $101.00 in a research report on Wednesday, February 27th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Philip Morris International currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $91.85.



NYSE:PM traded up $0.26 during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $83.96. The stock had a trading volume of 5,332 shares, compared to its average volume of 5,711,604. Philip Morris International has a 12-month low of $64.67 and a 12-month high of $92.74. The firm has a market cap of $129.82 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.47, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.11 and a beta of 0.93.

Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 18th. The company reported $1.09 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.99 by $0.10. Philip Morris International had a net margin of 9.74% and a negative return on equity of 78.74%. The firm had revenue of $6.75 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $6.76 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $1.00 EPS. Philip Morris International’s quarterly revenue was down 2.1% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, equities research analysts anticipate that Philip Morris International will post 5.23 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, Director Louis C. Camilleri sold 70,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, April 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $83.54, for a total value of $5,847,800.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, CEO Andre Calantzopoulos sold 50,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, February 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $84.76, for a total transaction of $4,238,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 844,901 shares in the company, valued at $71,613,808.76. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 121,200 shares of company stock worth $10,186,984 over the last quarter. Insiders own 0.21% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Marino Stram & Associates LLC increased its stake in shares of Philip Morris International by 29.7% during the 1st quarter. Marino Stram & Associates LLC now owns 5,004 shares of the company’s stock valued at $442,000 after acquiring an additional 1,146 shares during the last quarter. Anderson Fisher LLC increased its stake in shares of Philip Morris International by 18.1% during the 1st quarter. Anderson Fisher LLC now owns 23,675 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,093,000 after acquiring an additional 3,628 shares during the last quarter. Clarius Group LLC acquired a new position in shares of Philip Morris International during the 1st quarter valued at about $573,000. GYL Financial Synergies LLC increased its stake in shares of Philip Morris International by 652.9% during the 1st quarter. GYL Financial Synergies LLC now owns 27,225 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,406,000 after acquiring an additional 23,609 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Northeast Financial Consultants Inc increased its stake in shares of Philip Morris International by 0.6% during the 1st quarter. Northeast Financial Consultants Inc now owns 45,699 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,039,000 after acquiring an additional 277 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 73.39% of the company’s stock.

About Philip Morris International

Philip Morris International Inc, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, other nicotine-containing products, and smoke-free products and related electronic devices and accessories. The company offers IQOS smoke-free products, including heated tobacco and nicotine-containing vapor products under the HEETS, HEETS Marlboro, and HEETS FROM MARLBORO brands, as well as the Marlboro HeatSticks and Parliament HeatSticks brands.

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