Essex Financial Services Inc. Reduces Stake in Costco Wholesale Co. (COST)
Essex Financial Services Inc. cut its stake in Costco Wholesale Co. (NASDAQ:COST) by 7.0% during the fourth quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 5,125 shares of the retailer’s stock after selling 384 shares during the quarter. Essex Financial Services Inc.’s holdings in Costco Wholesale were worth $954,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of COST. Almanack Investment Partners LLC. acquired a new position in shares of Costco Wholesale in the second quarter worth $101,000. Wealthcare Advisory Partners LLC acquired a new position in shares of Costco Wholesale in the third quarter worth $102,000. Jacobus Wealth Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Costco Wholesale in the third quarter worth $103,000. Shamrock Asset Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Costco Wholesale by 171.3% in the third quarter. Shamrock Asset Management LLC now owns 662 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $109,000 after acquiring an additional 418 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Zions Bancorporation increased its stake in shares of Costco Wholesale by 148.4% in the third quarter. Zions Bancorporation now owns 688 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $113,000 after acquiring an additional 411 shares during the last quarter. 71.88% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Shares of Costco Wholesale Co. (COST) opened at $189.33 on Monday. The stock has a market capitalization of $83,135.92, a PE ratio of 31.50, a PEG ratio of 3.09 and a beta of 0.97. Costco Wholesale Co. has a 1 year low of $150.00 and a 1 year high of $199.88. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.57, a current ratio of 0.98 and a quick ratio of 0.43.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 2nd. Investors of record on Friday, February 16th were paid a $0.50 dividend. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.06%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, February 15th. Costco Wholesale’s payout ratio is presently 31.80%.
In related news, Director John W. Meisenbach sold 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $191.31, for a total value of $573,930.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 8,654 shares in the company, valued at $1,655,596.74. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, VP Timothy L. Rose sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $193.20, for a total transaction of $966,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 52,529 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $10,148,602.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 91,185 shares of company stock valued at $17,432,967. 0.58% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
COST has been the topic of a number of research reports. Oppenheimer upped their price target on shares of Costco Wholesale from $180.00 to $210.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Monday, January 8th. BMO Capital Markets raised shares of Costco Wholesale from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and increased their target price for the stock from $192.73 to $215.00 in a research report on Monday, December 18th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reissued a “buy” rating and set a $200.00 target price on shares of Costco Wholesale in a research report on Monday, December 4th. Vetr downgraded shares of Costco Wholesale from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $171.07 target price on the stock. in a research report on Monday, November 6th. Finally, Morgan Stanley set a $175.00 target price on shares of Costco Wholesale and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, December 15th. Ten investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $190.18.
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Costco Wholesale Profile
Costco Wholesale Corporation is engaged in the operation of membership warehouses in the United States and Puerto Rico, Canada, the United Kingdom, Mexico, Japan, Australia, Spain, and through its subsidiaries in Taiwan and Korea. As of August 28, 2016, the Company operated 715 warehouses across the world.
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