James C. Klauer Sells 5,000 Shares of Costco Wholesale Co. (NASDAQ:COST) Stock

Costco Wholesale Co. (NASDAQ:COST) insider James C. Klauer sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, June 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $255.53, for a total value of $1,277,650.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 48,310 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $12,344,654.30. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website.

Shares of NASDAQ COST opened at $257.11 on Wednesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.32, a current ratio of 0.98 and a quick ratio of 0.48. Costco Wholesale Co. has a 1-year low of $189.51 and a 1-year high of $259.61. The firm has a market cap of $113.07 billion, a P/E ratio of 37.64, a P/E/G ratio of 3.59 and a beta of 0.91.

Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 30th. The retailer reported $1.89 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.83 by $0.06. Costco Wholesale had a return on equity of 25.03% and a net margin of 2.41%. The firm had revenue of $34.74 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $34.72 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.70 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Costco Wholesale Co. will post 8.04 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Costco Wholesale announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock buyback program on Friday, April 26th that authorizes the company to buyback $4.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the retailer to repurchase up to 3.8% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are typically an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 24th. Investors of record on Friday, May 10th were issued a dividend of $0.65 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, May 9th. This is an increase from Costco Wholesale’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.57. This represents a $2.60 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.01%. Costco Wholesale’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 38.07%.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Horan Capital Advisors LLC. acquired a new stake in Costco Wholesale in the first quarter valued at $26,000. Permanens Capital L.P. acquired a new stake in Costco Wholesale in the first quarter valued at $31,000. ERTS Wealth Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Costco Wholesale in the fourth quarter valued at $30,000. C J Advisory Inc acquired a new stake in Costco Wholesale in the first quarter valued at $36,000. Finally, JNBA Financial Advisors lifted its holdings in Costco Wholesale by 484.6% in the first quarter. JNBA Financial Advisors now owns 152 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $37,000 after acquiring an additional 126 shares during the period. 71.14% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

COST has been the subject of several research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Costco Wholesale from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 13th. Wells Fargo & Co reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Costco Wholesale in a report on Friday, March 8th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased their price objective on Costco Wholesale to $248.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Friday, March 8th. Raymond James increased their price objective on Costco Wholesale from $240.00 to $250.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, March 8th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada increased their price objective on Costco Wholesale from $235.00 to $250.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, March 8th. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eighteen have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $252.13.

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About Costco Wholesale

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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Insider Buying and Selling by Quarter for Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST)

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