Watsco, Inc. (NYSE:WSO) saw a large decrease in short interest during the month of October. As of October 31st, there was short interest totalling 843,991 shares, a decrease of 35.3% from the October 13th total of 1,303,494 shares. Approximately 2.8% of the shares of the stock are sold short. Based on an average trading volume of 304,373 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.8 days.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Teacher Retirement System of Texas lifted its holdings in shares of Watsco by 0.9% in the second quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 2,426 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $374,000 after purchasing an additional 21 shares in the last quarter. Bank of Montreal Can lifted its holdings in shares of Watsco by 0.8% in the second quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 2,867 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $442,000 after purchasing an additional 22 shares in the last quarter. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Watsco by 1.3% in the second quarter. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. now owns 2,542 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $392,000 after purchasing an additional 32 shares in the last quarter. Creative Planning lifted its holdings in shares of Watsco by 6.1% in the second quarter. Creative Planning now owns 1,039 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $160,000 after purchasing an additional 60 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Prudential Financial Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Watsco by 0.4% in the second quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 18,918 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $2,917,000 after purchasing an additional 66 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 81.10% of the company’s stock.

WSO has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. Morgan Stanley reiterated an “underweight” rating and set a $141.00 price objective (up previously from $139.00) on shares of Watsco in a research report on Wednesday, July 26th. Robert W. Baird reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $163.00 price objective on shares of Watsco in a research report on Friday, September 1st. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Watsco from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 5th. BidaskClub upgraded Watsco from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 8th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $154.00 price objective on shares of Watsco in a research report on Thursday, September 7th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $160.40.

Shares of Watsco (NYSE WSO) opened at $164.38 on Tuesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $5,899.05, a price-to-earnings ratio of 30.74 and a beta of 0.83. Watsco has a 1-year low of $134.08 and a 1-year high of $167.94. The company has a quick ratio of 1.42, a current ratio of 3.13 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.21.

Watsco (NYSE:WSO) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The construction company reported $1.82 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.95 by ($0.13). The business had revenue of $1.23 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.26 billion. Watsco had a net margin of 4.46% and a return on equity of 15.00%. Watsco’s revenue for the quarter was down .9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.78 EPS. sell-side analysts expect that Watsco will post 5.59 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, October 31st. Stockholders of record on Monday, October 16th were issued a $1.25 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, October 13th. This represents a $5.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.04%. Watsco’s payout ratio is currently 92.42%.

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Watsco Company Profile

Watsco, Inc is a distributor of air conditioning, heating and refrigeration equipment, and related parts and supplies (HVAC/R) in the HVAC/R distribution industry in North America. As of December 31, 2016, the Company sold a range of non-equipment products, representing more than 300,000 stock keeping units, including parts, ductwork, air movement products, insulation, tools, installation supplies, thermostats and air quality products.

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