Western Digital Corporation (NASDAQ:WDC)’s share price gapped up before the market opened on Thursday after Morgan Stanley raised their price target on the stock from $90.00 to $92.00. The stock had previously closed at $78.87, but opened at $81.77. Morgan Stanley currently has an equal weight rating on the stock. Western Digital shares last traded at $83.63, with a volume of 6420700 shares traded.

Other equities analysts have also issued reports about the company. Jefferies Group restated a “hold” rating and set a $90.00 price target on shares of Western Digital in a research report on Friday, August 18th. Vetr cut Western Digital from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $95.94 price objective for the company. in a report on Wednesday, August 16th. Summit Redstone reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Western Digital in a report on Wednesday, September 13th. UBS dropped their price objective on Western Digital to $88.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a report on Wednesday. Finally, Cowen reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Western Digital in a report on Wednesday. Nine equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twenty-four have issued a buy rating and three have issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $113.10.

In other news, CFO Mark P. Long sold 4,467 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $88.13, for a total value of $393,676.71. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 88,384 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,789,281.92. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Kathleen A. Cote sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $90.63, for a total value of $181,260.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 16,421 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,488,235.23. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 24,042 shares of company stock valued at $2,116,143. 0.31% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Swiss National Bank increased its position in Western Digital by 2.1% during the 3rd quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 1,073,763 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $92,773,000 after buying an additional 21,900 shares in the last quarter. Buckingham Capital Management Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Western Digital in the 2nd quarter worth $1,754,000. Fjarde AP Fonden Fourth Swedish National Pension Fund increased its holdings in shares of Western Digital by 18.3% in the 2nd quarter. Fjarde AP Fonden Fourth Swedish National Pension Fund now owns 67,329 shares of the data storage provider’s stock worth $5,965,000 after purchasing an additional 10,428 shares in the last quarter. Calamos Advisors LLC increased its holdings in shares of Western Digital by 2.7% in the 2nd quarter. Calamos Advisors LLC now owns 45,377 shares of the data storage provider’s stock worth $4,020,000 after purchasing an additional 1,201 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Capital Analysts LLC bought a new stake in shares of Western Digital in the 2nd quarter worth $2,777,000. 83.99% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

The company has a market capitalization of $24,186.47, a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.21 and a beta of 1.10. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.07, a current ratio of 2.64 and a quick ratio of 2.13.

Western Digital (NASDAQ:WDC) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The data storage provider reported $3.56 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $3.01 by $0.55. The business had revenue of $5.18 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.13 billion. Western Digital had a return on equity of 26.48% and a net margin of 7.38%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 9.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.18 EPS. research analysts anticipate that Western Digital Corporation will post 12.01 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 29th will be issued a $0.50 dividend. This represents a $2.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.42%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, December 28th. Western Digital’s payout ratio is 41.75%.

Western Digital announced that its board has approved a share buyback program on Thursday, November 9th that allows the company to repurchase $2.10 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the data storage provider to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

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Western Digital Company Profile

Western Digital Corporation (Western Digital) is a developer, manufacturer and provider of data storage devices and solutions that address the needs of the information technology (IT) industry and the infrastructure that enables the proliferation of data in virtually every industry. The Company’s portfolio of offerings addresses three categories: Datacenter Devices and Solutions (capacity and performance enterprise hard disk drives (HDDs), enterprise solid state drives (SSDs), datacenter software and system solutions); Client Devices (mobile, desktop, gaming and digital video hard drives, client SSDs, embedded products and wafers), and Client Solutions (removable products, hard drive content solutions and flash content solutions).

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