The Investors Buy Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) on Weakness Following Analyst Downgrade

The Investors Buy Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) on Weakness Following Analyst Downgrade

Investors bought shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) on weakness during trading hours on Tuesday after BMO Capital Markets lowered their price target on the stock from $67.00 to $63.00. $170.81 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $71.79 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $99.02 million into the stock. Of all equities tracked, Wal-Mart Stores had the 6th highest net in-flow for the day. Wal-Mart Stores traded down ($0.72) for the day and closed at $67.98

WMT has been the topic of a number of other reports. Jefferies Group set a $86.00 target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 4th. Deutsche Bank AG reissued a “hold” rating and set a $77.00 target price (up from $68.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a report on Tuesday, August 2nd. Royal Bank Of Canada dropped their target price on shares of Wal-Mart Stores from $76.00 to $75.00 and set an “underperform” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, October 7th. Buckingham Research reissued a “neutral” rating on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a report on Thursday, August 18th. Finally, Vetr cut shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $76.24 price objective on the stock. in a report on Monday, August 8th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have assigned a hold rating, nine have assigned a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $74.93.

In other news, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 3,142,846 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $72.41, for a total value of $227,573,478.86. Following the sale, the insider now owns 6,748,580 shares in the company, valued at $488,664,677.80. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, insider Steven P. Whaley sold 1,100 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $71.46, for a total transaction of $78,606.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 29,464 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,105,497.44. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 51.55% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in WMT. Vigilant Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 1,270.0% in the second quarter. Vigilant Capital Management LLC now owns 1,370 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $100,000 after buying an additional 1,270 shares during the last quarter. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management bought a new stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores during the second quarter valued at about $100,000. Americafirst Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores during the second quarter valued at about $106,000. Seven Eight Capital LLC bought a new stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores during the second quarter valued at about $111,000. Finally, Piershale Financial Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 0.6% in the second quarter. Piershale Financial Group Inc. now owns 1,607 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $117,000 after buying an additional 10 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 29.55% of the company’s stock.

The stock has a 50 day moving average of $71.35 and a 200 day moving average of $70.94. The company has a market cap of $208.67 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.52 and a beta of 0.20.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 18th. The retailer reported $1.07 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.02 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $120.90 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $119.33 billion. Wal-Mart Stores had a return on equity of 17.93% and a net margin of 3.04%. Wal-Mart Stores’s revenue was up .5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm posted $1.08 earnings per share. Analysts expect that Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will post $4.34 EPS for the current year.

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