Published On: Sat, Sep 10th, 2016

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) Stock Rating Upgraded by Vetr Inc.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) was upgraded by equities researchers at Vetr from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Wednesday. The firm currently has a $73.70 target price on the retailer’s stock. Vetr‘s price target suggests a potential upside of 4.84% from the company’s previous close.
A number of other equities research analysts have also recently weighed in on the company. Zacks Investment Research cut Wal-Mart Stores from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 24th. Morgan Stanley set a $73.00 price objective on Wal-Mart Stores and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 3rd. Jefferies Group reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $86.00 price objective (up previously from $85.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Monday, August 15th. Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $77.00 price objective (up previously from $68.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Tuesday, August 2nd. Finally, Nomura reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $81.00 price objective on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a research note on Thursday, June 23rd. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-four have given a hold rating, four have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $72.98.
Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) traded down 2.13% during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $70.30. 12,172,571 shares of the company were exchanged. Wal-Mart Stores has a 52-week low of $56.30 and a 52-week high of $75.19. The company has a 50 day moving average of $72.81 and a 200-day moving average of $70.31. The company has a market capitalization of $217.46 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.13 and a beta of 0.22.

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Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 18th. The retailer reported $1.07 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.02 by $0.05. Wal-Mart Stores had a return on equity of 17.93% and a net margin of 3.04%. The company earned $120.90 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $119.33 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.08 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up .5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Wal-Mart Stores will post $4.34 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
In related news, major shareholder Jim C. Walton sold 1,450,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, June 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $71.39, for a total transaction of $103,515,500.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Director S Robson Walton sold 478,158 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, June 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $71.60, for a total value of $34,236,112.80. Following the sale, the director now owns 1,987,604 shares in the company, valued at $142,312,446.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 51.55% of the company’s stock.
Several large investors recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Fisher Asset Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 1,671.0% in the second quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 4,930,805 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $365,175,000 after buying an additional 4,652,393 shares during the last quarter. Bank of Montreal Can acquired a new stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores during the second quarter worth $309,966,000. Millennium Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 3,109.1% in the fourth quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 2,314,889 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $141,903,000 after buying an additional 2,242,753 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores by 2.5% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 71,591,885 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $4,903,327,000 after buying an additional 1,726,468 shares during the period. Finally, NN Investment Partners Holdings N.V. acquired a new stake in shares of Wal-Mart Stores during the first quarter worth $85,821,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 29.47% of the company’s stock.
About Wal-Mart Stores
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc is engaged in the operation of retail, wholesale and other units in various formats around the world. The Company offers an assortment of merchandise and services at everyday low prices (EDLP). The Company operates through three segments: Walmart U.S., Walmart International and Sam’s Club.
To view Vetr’s full report, visit Vetr’s official website.

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