Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) gapped up prior to trading on Tuesday after Bank of America Corporation raised their price target on the stock from $90.00 to $100.00. The stock had previously closed at $78.38, but opened at $80.53. Bank of America Corporation currently has a buy rating on the stock. Wal-Mart Stores shares last traded at $84.13, with a volume of 25,110,368 shares changing hands.
Other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports about the stock. Citigroup Inc. increased their target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores from $78.00 to $80.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 15th. Wells Fargo & Company reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research report on Thursday, August 17th. Credit Suisse Group reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $84.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research report on Friday, August 18th. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. began coverage on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research report on Tuesday. They issued a “buy” rating and a $90.00 target price for the company. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $88.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research report on Wednesday, June 14th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have issued a hold rating, fourteen have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $81.98.
In other Wal-Mart Stores news, Director S Robson Walton sold 646,330 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.20, for a total transaction of $51,835,666.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 3,344,956 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $268,265,471.20. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 621,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $78.28, for a total transaction of $48,651,020.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 6,748,580 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $528,278,842.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 9,924,828 shares of company stock valued at $785,676,492. 51.39% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in WMT. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 0.4% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 105,673,654 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $7,997,381,000 after purchasing an additional 440,343 shares during the period. State Street Corp boosted its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 1.2% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 73,568,236 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $5,303,013,000 after purchasing an additional 854,010 shares during the period. FMR LLC boosted its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 45.3% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 17,982,372 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $1,360,906,000 after purchasing an additional 5,608,785 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 4.1% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 14,579,702 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $1,103,426,000 after purchasing an additional 580,373 shares during the period. Finally, American Century Companies Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 2.6% in the first quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 10,040,766 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $723,738,000 after purchasing an additional 256,833 shares during the period. 30.19% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
The firm has a market capitalization of $251.31 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.21 and a beta of 0.29. The company’s 50-day moving average is $79.46 and its 200-day moving average is $77.32.
Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 17th. The retailer reported $1.08 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.07 by $0.01. Wal-Mart Stores had a return on equity of 16.87% and a net margin of 2.60%. The firm had revenue of $123.40 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $121.86 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.07 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 2.1% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts expect that Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. will post $4.38 EPS for the current year.
Wal-Mart Stores Company Profile
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc is engaged in the operation of retail, wholesale and other units in various formats around the world. The Company operates through three segments: Walmart U.S., Walmart International and Sam’s Club. The Walmart U.S. segment includes its mass merchant concept in the United States operating under the Walmart or Wal-Mart brands, as well as digital retail.
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