Russell Investments Group Ltd. lessened its stake in Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM – Get Rating) by 34.4% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 349,849 shares of the business services provider’s stock after selling 183,582 shares during the quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. owned about 0.09% of Waste Management worth $56,055,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management Co. Ltd. boosted its holdings in shares of Waste Management by 9.1% in the 3rd quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management Co. Ltd. now owns 254,407 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $40,759,000 after purchasing an additional 21,213 shares during the last quarter. Aptus Capital Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Waste Management by 16.4% during the 3rd quarter. Aptus Capital Advisors LLC now owns 4,884 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $783,000 after acquiring an additional 687 shares in the last quarter. Wall Street Access Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Waste Management during the 2nd quarter valued at $296,000. Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund lifted its holdings in shares of Waste Management by 66.0% during the 2nd quarter. Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund now owns 18,266 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $2,794,000 after acquiring an additional 7,262 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Douglas Lane & Associates LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Waste Management by 3.6% during the 3rd quarter. Douglas Lane & Associates LLC now owns 3,133 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $502,000 after acquiring an additional 109 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 78.48% of the company’s stock.
Insider Transactions at Waste Management
In related news, Director John C. Pope sold 218 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, January 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $154.76, for a total transaction of $33,737.68. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 55,809 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $8,637,000.84. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Company insiders own 0.18% of the company’s stock.
Waste Management Price Performance
Waste Management (NYSE:WM – Get Rating) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 26th. The business services provider reported $1.56 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.50 by $0.06. The business had revenue of $5.08 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.06 billion. Waste Management had a net margin of 11.55% and a return on equity of 32.48%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.26 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Waste Management, Inc. will post 5.7 EPS for the current year.
Waste Management announced that its board has initiated a share buyback plan on Thursday, December 8th that permits the company to buyback $1.50 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the business services provider to reacquire up to 2.2% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
Waste Management Announces Dividend
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 16th. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 2nd were paid a dividend of $0.65 per share. This represents a $2.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.70%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, December 1st. Waste Management’s payout ratio is 48.33%.
Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth
Several research firms recently weighed in on WM. Raymond James reduced their target price on shares of Waste Management from $173.00 to $170.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, October 25th. StockNews.com lowered shares of Waste Management from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, December 15th. Jefferies Financial Group raised shares of Waste Management from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $170.00 to $191.00 in a research note on Tuesday, October 25th. Stifel Nicolaus downgraded shares of Waste Management from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and dropped their price target for the stock from $185.00 to $171.00 in a research note on Monday, December 19th. Finally, Morgan Stanley dropped their price target on shares of Waste Management from $180.00 to $177.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, October 27th. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $171.36.
Waste Management Company Profile
Waste Management, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides waste management environmental services to residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal customers in North America. It offers collection services, including picking up and transporting waste and recyclable materials from where it was generated to a transfer station, material recovery facility (MRF), or disposal site; and owns, develops, and operates landfill gas-to-energy facilities in the United States, as well as owns and operates transfer stations.
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