Zacks Investment Research Upgrades Philip Morris International Inc (PM) to Hold

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Philip Morris International Inc (NYSE:PM) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report released on Monday, October 30th.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Philip Morris have declined in the past three months, underperforming the industry. Though the company has been benefiting from enhanced volumes and revenues in the reduced risk products category, it has been suffering majorly due to consistent declines in cigarette volumes stemming from the shift of customer preference away from tobacco products. Owing to such headwinds, Phillip Morris continued with its drab performance in third-quarter 2017, wherein both earnings and revenues lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate. These factors also compelled management to lower its 2017 view. Nevertheless, Philip Morris’ consistent efforts to improve the performance of its low risk products remain encouraging. In this category, the company’s IQOS smokeless cigarette have been steadily expanding owing to consumer demand.  Higher cigarette pricing has also been favoring the company.”

PM has been the subject of a number of other reports. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $134.00 price objective on Philip Morris International and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Saturday, August 19th. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) raised Philip Morris International from a buy rating to a conviction-buy rating and set a $135.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Thursday, September 28th. SBG Securities raised Philip Morris International from a sell rating to a hold rating and raised their price objective for the company from $118.00 to $119.00 in a research report on Friday, August 11th. BidaskClub raised Philip Morris International from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Saturday, August 12th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company reissued an outperform rating and set a $140.00 price target on shares of Philip Morris International in a report on Tuesday, October 10th. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Philip Morris International presently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $124.23.

Shares of Philip Morris International (NYSE PM) opened at $102.64 on Monday. Philip Morris International has a 52-week low of $86.78 and a 52-week high of $123.55. The stock has a market capitalization of $159,420.75, a P/E ratio of 22.86, a PEG ratio of 2.07 and a beta of 0.91. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of -2.91, a current ratio of 1.13 and a quick ratio of 0.68.

Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 19th. The company reported $1.27 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.38 by ($0.11). Philip Morris International had a net margin of 9.32% and a negative return on equity of 67.59%. The business had revenue of $7.50 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $7.75 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.25 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 7.4% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts anticipate that Philip Morris International will post 4.75 EPS for the current year.

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In other news, insider Drago Azinovic sold 14,000 shares of Philip Morris International stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $116.00, for a total value of $1,624,000.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Louis C. Camilleri sold 108,979 shares of Philip Morris International stock in a transaction on Tuesday, October 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $108.38, for a total value of $11,811,144.02. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.23% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Guidant Wealth Advisors increased its stake in shares of Philip Morris International by 25.5% in the 2nd quarter. Guidant Wealth Advisors now owns 939 shares of the company’s stock valued at $110,000 after purchasing an additional 191 shares during the last quarter. Welch Investments LLC bought a new position in shares of Philip Morris International in the 1st quarter valued at $113,000. American Beacon Advisors Inc. bought a new position in shares of Philip Morris International in the 1st quarter valued at $114,000. NewSquare Capital LLC increased its stake in shares of Philip Morris International by 6,572.3% in the 3rd quarter. NewSquare Capital LLC now owns 101,753 shares of the company’s stock valued at $116,000 after purchasing an additional 100,228 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Vantage Investment Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Philip Morris International by 1.0% in the 2nd quarter. Vantage Investment Advisors LLC now owns 1,033 shares of the company’s stock valued at $121,000 after purchasing an additional 10 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 72.22% of the company’s stock.

About Philip Morris International

Philip Morris International Inc is a holding company. The Company is engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes, other tobacco products and other nicotine-containing products in markets outside of the United States. Its segments include European Union (EU); Eastern Europe, Middle East & Africa (EEMA); Asia, and Latin America & Canada.

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