Costco Wholesale (COST) Hits New 52-Week High Following Dividend Announcement

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Costco Wholesale Co. (NASDAQ:COST) shares reached a new 52-week high during mid-day trading on Friday following a dividend announcement from the company. The stock traded as high as $225.78 and last traded at $225.52, with a volume of 85496 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $222.96.

The newly announced dividend which will be paid on Friday, September 14th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 31st will be issued a dividend of $0.57 per share. This represents a $2.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.01%. Costco Wholesale’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 39.18%.

Several equities research analysts have commented on the stock. Loop Capital reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Costco Wholesale in a report on Friday. Cowen reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $240.00 price objective on shares of Costco Wholesale in a report on Friday, August 10th. Telsey Advisory Group upped their price objective on shares of Costco Wholesale from $220.00 to $230.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 7th. Gordon Haskett downgraded shares of Costco Wholesale from a “buy” rating to an “accumulate” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 25th. Finally, Citigroup upped their price objective on shares of Costco Wholesale from $222.00 to $250.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, July 23rd. Nine research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty-one have issued a buy rating to the company. Costco Wholesale presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $206.74.

The firm has a market capitalization of $96.62 billion, a PE ratio of 38.78, a PEG ratio of 2.73 and a beta of 0.95. The company has a current ratio of 1.01, a quick ratio of 0.47 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52.

Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 31st. The retailer reported $1.70 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.68 by $0.02. Costco Wholesale had a net margin of 2.16% and a return on equity of 24.67%. The firm had revenue of $32.36 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $31.89 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.40 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.1% on a year-over-year basis. analysts anticipate that Costco Wholesale Co. will post 6.77 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, VP Timothy L. Rose sold 2,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $205.19, for a total value of $512,975.00. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 20,403 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,186,491.57. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, insider Daniel M. Hines sold 7,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $204.67, for a total transaction of $1,432,690.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 23,853 shares in the company, valued at $4,881,993.51. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 41,491 shares of company stock worth $8,754,977. Insiders own 0.58% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Schroder Investment Management Group increased its position in shares of Costco Wholesale by 9.3% in the second quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 303,934 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $63,434,000 after purchasing an additional 25,807 shares during the last quarter. Global X Management Co LLC increased its position in shares of Costco Wholesale by 10.0% in the second quarter. Global X Management Co LLC now owns 9,496 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $1,984,000 after purchasing an additional 861 shares during the last quarter. MAI Capital Management increased its position in shares of Costco Wholesale by 3.2% in the second quarter. MAI Capital Management now owns 33,295 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $6,958,000 after purchasing an additional 1,048 shares during the last quarter. Gifford Fong Associates bought a new position in shares of Costco Wholesale in the second quarter worth approximately $878,000. Finally, Bank of Nova Scotia increased its position in shares of Costco Wholesale by 249.4% in the second quarter. Bank of Nova Scotia now owns 281,686 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $58,870,000 after purchasing an additional 201,072 shares during the last quarter. 71.53% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Costco Wholesale Company Profile (NASDAQ:COST)

Costco Wholesale Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates membership warehouses. It offers branded and private-label products in a range of merchandise categories. The company provides dry and packaged foods, and groceries; snack foods, candies, alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages, and cleaning supplies; appliances, electronics, health and beauty aids, hardware, and garden and patio products; meat, bakery, deli, and produces; and apparel and small appliances.

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