Altria's (NYSE: MO) stock rose nearly 6% on Feb. 1 after its fourth-quarter report. The domestic tobacco leader's revenue (net of excise taxes) stayed nearly flat year over year at $5.08 billion but missed analysts' estimates by $70 million. Altria's bottom line beat suggested that its traditional tactics of raising prices, cutting costs, and buying back shares still enabled it to squeeze out higher earnings per share as declining smoking rates throttled its shipments.
The group will cut the number of its business regions from four to three and reduce its business units from 16 to 12.
Here are two dependable ultra-high-yielding dividend stocks that are likely to attract investor attention in 2023 as a hedge against broader market uncertainty. British American Tobacco's (NYSE: BTI) $84 billion market capitalization is second only to Philip Morris International's (NYSE: PM) $159 billion market cap among tobacco stocks. The company's iconic brands are sold in almost every market around the world.