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Altria (MO) Gains As Market Dips: What You Should Know

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In the latest trading session, Altria (MO - Free Report) closed at $43.49, marking a +0.46% move from the previous day. This move outpaced the S&P 500's daily loss of 0.81%. At the same time, the Dow lost 0.56%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 1.27%.

Coming into today, shares of the owner of Philip Morris USA, the nation's largest cigarette maker had gained 4.19% in the past month. In that same time, the Consumer Staples sector gained 3.44%, while the S&P 500 gained 5.06%.

Wall Street will be looking for positivity from MO as it approaches its next earnings report date. On that day, MO is projected to report earnings of $1.14 per share, which would represent year-over-year growth of 5.56%. Our most recent consensus estimate is calling for quarterly revenue of $5.45 billion, up 0.62% from the year-ago period.

MO's full-year Zacks Consensus Estimates are calling for earnings of $4.31 per share and revenue of $20.37 billion. These results would represent year-over-year changes of +2.13% and +2.92%, respectively.

Any recent changes to analyst estimates for MO should also be noted by investors. These recent revisions tend to reflect the evolving nature of short-term business trends. With this in mind, we can consider positive estimate revisions a sign of optimism about the company's business outlook.

Based on our research, we believe these estimate revisions are directly related to near-team stock moves. 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. Within the past 30 days, our consensus EPS projection has moved 0.12% higher. MO currently has a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold).

Investors should also note MO's current valuation metrics, including its Forward P/E ratio of 10.05. For comparison, its industry has an average Forward P/E of 10.87, which means MO is trading at a discount to the group.

Also, we should mention that MO has a PEG ratio of 2.51. 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. The Tobacco industry currently had an average PEG ratio of 2.38 as of yesterday's close.

The Tobacco industry is part of the Consumer Staples sector. This industry currently has a Zacks Industry Rank of 49, which puts it in the top 20% of all 250+ industries.

The Zacks Industry Rank includes is listed in order from best to worst in terms of the average Zacks Rank of the individual companies within each of these sectors. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.

You can find more information on all of these metrics, and much more, on Zacks.com.


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