Advisor Partners LLC increased its position in Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) by 3.3% in the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 32,796 shares of the retailer’s stock after acquiring an additional 1,037 shares during the period. Advisor Partners LLC owned about 1,097.88% of Wal-Mart Stores worth $2,563,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in WMT. FMR LLC grew its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 45.3% in the 2nd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 17,982,372 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $1,360,906,000 after purchasing an additional 5,608,785 shares during the period. Alliancebernstein L.P. grew its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 42.6% in the 2nd quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 5,745,493 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $434,819,000 after purchasing an additional 1,716,422 shares during the period. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC grew its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 52.9% in the 2nd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 4,883,390 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $369,565,000 after purchasing an additional 1,689,364 shares during the period. Neuberger Berman Group LLC grew its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 100.2% in the 2nd quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 2,646,589 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $200,294,000 after purchasing an additional 1,324,722 shares during the period. Finally, Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. grew its position in Wal-Mart Stores by 128.7% in the 3rd quarter. Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. now owns 2,058,798 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $160,874,000 after purchasing an additional 1,158,519 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 30.53% of the company’s stock.

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Shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) traded up $1.16 during trading hours on Monday, reaching $109.55. 8,345,460 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 8,190,000. The company has a market cap of $324,530.00, a P/E ratio of 29.14, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 4.29 and a beta of 0.37. Wal-Mart Stores Inc has a one year low of $65.28 and a one year high of $109.98. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52, a current ratio of 0.81 and a quick ratio of 0.19.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, November 16th. The retailer reported $1.00 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.97 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $122.14 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $120.23 billion. Wal-Mart Stores had a net margin of 2.31% and a return on equity of 16.92%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.98 EPS. analysts predict that Wal-Mart Stores Inc will post 4.43 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Wal-Mart Stores declared that its board has initiated a share buyback plan on Tuesday, October 10th that allows the company to buyback $20.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the retailer to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are typically an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

In other Wal-Mart Stores news, EVP John R. Furner sold 1,200 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, November 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $99.29, for a total value of $119,148.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 48,757 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,841,082.53. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, major shareholder Alice L. Walton sold 1,002,210 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $96.23, for a total transaction of $96,442,668.30. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 6,748,580 shares in the company, valued at $649,415,853.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 12,419,588 shares of company stock worth $1,207,333,538 over the last 90 days. Insiders own 51.39% of the company’s stock.

A number of brokerages have recently issued reports on WMT. Goldman Sachs Group downgraded shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $100.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Monday, November 20th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Barclays boosted their price objective on shares of Wal-Mart Stores to $120.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Friday. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 17th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and issued a $84.00 target price (up previously from $80.00) on shares of Wal-Mart Stores in a report on Friday, October 6th. Finally, Vetr downgraded shares of Wal-Mart Stores from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $91.97 target price for the company. in a report on Friday, November 17th. Eighteen research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, sixteen have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. Wal-Mart Stores presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $99.80.

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Wal-Mart Stores 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.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT)

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