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Altria (MO) Increases Yet Falls Behind Market: What Investors Need to Know

Altria (MO) closed the most recent trading day at $44.80, moving +0.22% from the previous trading session. The stock's performance was behind the S&P 500's daily gain of 0.25%. At the same time, the Dow added 0.15%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq gained 0.03%.

Shares of the owner of Philip Morris USA, the nation's largest cigarette maker witnessed a loss of 2.61% over the previous month, beating the performance of the Consumer Staples sector with its loss of 3.62% and underperforming the S&P 500's gain of 3.34%.

The investment community will be paying close attention to the earnings performance of Altria in its upcoming release. The company's earnings per share (EPS) are projected to be $1.35, reflecting a 3.05% increase from the same quarter last year. Meanwhile, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenue is projecting net sales of $5.39 billion, down 0.94% from the year-ago period.

In terms of the entire fiscal year, the Zacks Consensus Estimates predict earnings of $5.11 per share and a revenue of $20.45 billion, indicating changes of +3.23% and -0.26%, respectively, from the former year.

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Investors should also take note of any recent adjustments to analyst estimates for Altria. These latest adjustments often mirror the shifting dynamics of short-term business patterns. With this in mind, we can consider positive estimate revisions a sign of optimism about the company's business outlook.

Our research reveals that these estimate alterations are directly linked with the stock price performance in the near future. We developed the Zacks Rank to capitalize on this phenomenon. Our system takes these estimate changes into account and delivers a clear, actionable rating model.

Ranging from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell), the Zacks Rank system has a proven, outside-audited track record of outperformance, with #1 stocks returning an average of +25% annually since 1988. Over the past month, there's been a 0.07% rise in the Zacks Consensus EPS estimate. Altria is currently a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

With respect to valuation, Altria is currently being traded at a Forward P/E ratio of 8.75. Its industry sports an average Forward P/E of 8.75, so one might conclude that Altria is trading at no noticeable deviation comparatively.

It is also worth noting that MO currently has a PEG ratio of 2.76. The PEG ratio is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but this metric also takes the company's expected earnings growth rate into account. By the end of yesterday's trading, the Tobacco industry had an average PEG ratio of 1.84.

The Tobacco industry is part of the Consumer Staples sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 96, putting it in the top 39% of all 250+ industries.

The Zacks Industry Rank evaluates the power of our distinct industry groups by determining the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks forming the groups. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.

To follow MO in the coming trading sessions, be sure to utilize Zacks.com.

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Altria Group, Inc. (MO) : Free Stock Analysis Report

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