Sii Investments Inc. WI increased its stake in Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ:WBA) by 2.3% during the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 64,804 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock after buying an additional 1,431 shares during the period. Sii Investments Inc. WI’s holdings in Walgreens Boots Alliance were worth $5,393,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Hudock Capital Group LLC increased its position in Walgreens Boots Alliance by 0.4% in the first quarter. Hudock Capital Group LLC now owns 1,300 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock valued at $108,000 after buying an additional 5 shares in the last quarter. Tarbox Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance by 288.3% in the first quarter. Tarbox Group Inc. now owns 1,355 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock worth $113,000 after buying an additional 1,006 shares in the last quarter. Howe & Rusling Inc. increased its position in shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance by 209.2% in the first quarter. Howe & Rusling Inc. now owns 1,441 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock worth $120,000 after buying an additional 975 shares during the period. Webster Bank N. A. increased its position in shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance by 18.4% in the first quarter. Webster Bank N. A. now owns 1,509 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock worth $125,000 after buying an additional 235 shares during the period. Finally, Orrstown Financial Services Inc. increased its position in shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance by 13.9% in the first quarter. Orrstown Financial Services Inc. now owns 1,515 shares of the pharmacy operator’s stock worth $126,000 after buying an additional 185 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 61.17% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ:WBA) traded up 1.22% on Friday, hitting $80.72. The stock had a trading volume of 3,992,347 shares. The stock has a market cap of $86.38 billion, a P/E ratio of 20.38 and a beta of 1.25. Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. has a 1-year low of $75.18 and a 1-year high of $89.69. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $79.08 and its 200 day moving average is $82.30.

Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, June 29th. The pharmacy operator reported $1.33 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.30 by $0.03. Walgreens Boots Alliance had a return on equity of 17.34% and a net margin of 3.69%. The company had revenue of $30.12 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $29.72 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $1.18 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 2.1% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts forecast that Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. will post $5.01 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 12th. Stockholders of record on Friday, August 18th will be paid a $0.40 dividend. This is a positive change from Walgreens Boots Alliance’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.38. This represents a $1.60 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.98%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 16th. Walgreens Boots Alliance’s dividend payout ratio is currently 37.78%.

Walgreens Boots Alliance announced that its board has approved a share buyback program on Thursday, June 29th that allows the company to buyback $5.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the pharmacy operator to repurchase up to 5.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are generally an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

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WBA has been the subject of a number of research reports. Needham & Company LLC upgraded Walgreens Boots Alliance from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $94.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Friday, June 30th. Credit Suisse Group restated a “buy” rating and set a $97.00 price target on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a research note on Thursday, July 13th. Leerink Swann set a $86.00 price target on Walgreens Boots Alliance and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 7th. Citigroup Inc. reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a report on Monday, July 3rd. Finally, Guggenheim reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Walgreens Boots Alliance in a report on Monday, July 3rd. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and fourteen have issued a buy rating to the stock. Walgreens Boots Alliance has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $90.69.

In other news, Director William C. Foote sold 2,736 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, July 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $79.79, for a total value of $218,305.44. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 19,151 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,528,058.29. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 13.50% of the company’s stock.

About Walgreens Boots Alliance

Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc (Walgreens Boots Alliance) is a holding company. The Company is a global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise. Walgreens Boots Alliance operates through three divisions, including Retail Pharmacy USA, Retail Pharmacy International and Pharmaceutical Wholesale. The Company’s products are marketed under a number of brands, which include No7, the Botanics range, Almus (generic medicines), Boots Pharmaceuticals and Soap & Glory (bathing and beauty brand).

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA)

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