Will Altria Sell Its ABI Stake After Juul Deal?

Barron's says it might.  Why would it sell a dependable source of dividends and (unlike tobacco, smokeless or otherwise) growth?  To use the proceeds to buy back its own shares.  Currently Altria holds $11 billion of Anheuser-Busch InBev stock.  

So far this year, ABI stock, which closed at $60 on Wednesday, is up 15.37% on the year.

Altria has exited from Juul, and in the process incurred a capital loss.  Capital losses can only be offset by  capital gains.  One was to get that capital gian might be for Altria to sell its ABI stake.  

"This might be the time for Altria to finally monetize its ABI stake, which in light of the large capital loss it now has at its disposal, can be done on what amounts to a tax-free basis," Tax expert Robert Willens told Barron's in an email.