Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. boosted its position in Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) by 8.7% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 161,736 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock after buying an additional 12,982 shares during the period. Lowe’s Companies comprises approximately 1.0% of Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc.’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 18th largest position. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc.’s holdings in Lowe’s Companies were worth $12,539,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BKD Wealth Advisors LLC increased its position in Lowe’s Companies by 7.3% in the first quarter. BKD Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 8,489 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $698,000 after buying an additional 581 shares during the last quarter. Winslow Evans & Crocker Inc. increased its position in Lowe’s Companies by 11.1% in the first quarter. Winslow Evans & Crocker Inc. now owns 3,494 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $287,000 after buying an additional 350 shares during the last quarter. Guild Investment Management Inc. bought a new position in Lowe’s Companies during the first quarter valued at about $4,526,000. Private Bank & Trust Co. increased its position in Lowe’s Companies by 6.1% in the first quarter. Private Bank & Trust Co. now owns 16,780 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $1,380,000 after buying an additional 972 shares during the last quarter. Finally, First Command Financial Services Inc. increased its position in Lowe’s Companies by 2.8% in the first quarter. First Command Financial Services Inc. now owns 5,600 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock valued at $461,000 after buying an additional 150 shares during the last quarter. 74.70% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE LOW) traded up 0.32% during trading on Friday, hitting $77.26. 3,090,052 shares of the stock were exchanged. The firm has a market capitalization of $65.22 billion, a P/E ratio of 24.23 and a beta of 1.08. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $76.69 and a 200 day moving average price of $79.41. Lowe’s Companies, Inc. has a 52 week low of $64.87 and a 52 week high of $86.25.

Lowe’s Companies (NYSE:LOW) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 24th. The home improvement retailer reported $1.03 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.06 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $16.86 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $16.99 billion. Lowe’s Companies had a return on equity of 56.78% and a net margin of 4.22%. Lowe’s Companies’s quarterly revenue was up 10.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.87 earnings per share. Analysts forecast that Lowe’s Companies, Inc. will post $4.62 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, August 9th. Investors of record on Wednesday, July 26th were issued a $0.41 dividend. This is an increase from Lowe’s Companies’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.35. This represents a $1.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.12%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, July 24th. Lowe’s Companies’s payout ratio is 51.57%.

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LOW has been the topic of several research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Lowe’s Companies from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $92.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Tuesday, April 18th. Vetr upgraded shares of Lowe’s Companies from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $83.11 price objective on the stock in a report on Monday, April 24th. Credit Suisse Group set a $94.00 price objective on shares of Lowe’s Companies and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, May 2nd. BMO Capital Markets restated a “buy” rating and set a $89.00 price objective on shares of Lowe’s Companies in a report on Friday, May 5th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC boosted their price objective on shares of Lowe’s Companies from $80.00 to $94.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, May 12th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and sixteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Lowe’s Companies has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $85.23.

In related news, insider Richard D. Maltsbarger sold 11,672 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.20, for a total value of $936,094.40. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 37,716 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,024,823.20. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. 0.11% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Lowe’s Companies Company Profile

Lowe’s Companies, Inc (Lowe’s) is a home improvement retailer. The Company operates approximately 1,860 home improvement and hardware stores, representing approximately 200 million square feet of retail selling space. The Company operates approximately 1,800 stores located across over 50 states in the United States, including approximately 80 Orchard Supply Hardware (Orchard) stores in California and Oregon, as well as approximately 40 stores in Canada and over 10 stores in Mexico.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Lowe`s Companies (NYSE:LOW)

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