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New York State Common Retirement Fund Decreases Stock Holdings in Vector Group Ltd. (NYSE:VGR)

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New York State Common Retirement Fund decreased its holdings in shares of Vector Group Ltd. (NYSE:VGR) by 17.2% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 102,293 shares of the company’s stock after selling 21,300 shares during the quarter. New York State Common Retirement Fund owned about 0.07% of Vector Group worth $1,304,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Banque Cantonale Vaudoise purchased a new stake in shares of Vector Group in the second quarter valued at $36,000. Fieldpoint Private Securities LLC raised its stake in shares of Vector Group by 12.9% in the second quarter. Fieldpoint Private Securities LLC now owns 6,830 shares of the company’s stock valued at $99,000 after acquiring an additional 782 shares during the period. Islay Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Vector Group in the third quarter valued at $109,000. Advisory Services Network LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Vector Group in the second quarter valued at $124,000. Finally, Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio raised its stake in shares of Vector Group by 14.1% in the second quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 9,603 shares of the company’s stock valued at $136,000 after acquiring an additional 1,188 shares during the period. 62.96% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

NYSE VGR opened at $11.70 on Friday. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $14.94 and its 200-day moving average price is $14.17. The stock has a market cap of $1.80 billion, a PE ratio of 8.73 and a beta of 1.06. Vector Group Ltd. has a 12 month low of $10.91 and a 12 month high of $17.39.

Vector Group (NYSE:VGR) last issued its earnings results on Monday, November 8th. The company reported $0.34 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.37 by ($0.03). Vector Group had a negative return on equity of 36.57% and a net margin of 8.32%. The business had revenue of $652.65 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $651.80 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.25 earnings per share. Research analysts forecast that Vector Group Ltd. will post 1.59 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, December 20th. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 10th were issued a dividend of $0.20 per share. This represents a $0.80 annualized dividend and a yield of 6.84%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, December 9th. Vector Group’s payout ratio is 59.70%.

Several brokerages have recently weighed in on VGR. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Vector Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, January 7th. Oppenheimer upgraded shares of Vector Group from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $18.00 price target on the stock in a report on Tuesday, November 9th. Finally, Barclays upgraded shares of Vector Group from an “underweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $13.00 to $17.00 in a report on Monday, November 15th.

Vector Group Profile

Vector Group Ltd. is a holding company, which engages in the distribution of tobacco products. It operates through the following segments: Tobacco, Real Estate, and Corporate and Other. The Tobacco segment consists of the manufacturing and sale of cigarettes. The Real Estate segment includes the acquisition and investments in real estate properties and projects.

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