Royal London Asset Management Ltd. Acquires New Stake in Costco Wholesale Co. (NASDAQ:COST)

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Royal London Asset Management Ltd. bought a new stake in Costco Wholesale Co. (NASDAQ:COST) during the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund bought 189,763 shares of the retailer’s stock, valued at approximately $39,663,000.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of COST. MUFG Securities EMEA plc bought a new stake in Costco Wholesale during the second quarter worth about $103,000. Well Done LLC bought a new stake in shares of Costco Wholesale during the first quarter valued at approximately $109,000. Trilogy Capital Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Costco Wholesale during the first quarter valued at approximately $116,000. Bay Colony Advisory Group Inc d b a Bay Colony Advisors bought a new stake in shares of Costco Wholesale during the second quarter valued at approximately $119,000. Finally, Zions Bancorporation bought a new stake in shares of Costco Wholesale during the second quarter valued at approximately $160,000. 71.49% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

NASDAQ COST traded up $5.13 during trading hours on Friday, hitting $226.95. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 2,939,146 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,232,079. Costco Wholesale Co. has a twelve month low of $157.00 and a twelve month high of $245.16. The firm has a market capitalization of $103.00 billion, a P/E ratio of 38.99, a P/E/G ratio of 2.78 and a beta of 0.95. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52, a current ratio of 1.01 and a quick ratio of 0.47.

Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 4th. The retailer reported $2.36 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.34 by $0.02. Costco Wholesale had a net margin of 2.16% and a return on equity of 24.67%. The business had revenue of $44.41 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $44.17 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $2.08 earnings per share. Costco Wholesale’s revenue was up 5.0% compared to the same quarter last year. Sell-side analysts expect that Costco Wholesale Co. will post 6.8 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 14th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 31st were issued a $0.57 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, August 30th. This represents a $2.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.00%. Costco Wholesale’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 39.18%.

Several research firms have recently commented on COST. Loop Capital increased their price target on shares of Costco Wholesale to $235.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 11th. BidaskClub cut shares of Costco Wholesale from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 19th. Gordon Haskett cut shares of Costco Wholesale from a “buy” rating to an “accumulate” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 25th. BMO Capital Markets set a $260.00 price target on shares of Costco Wholesale and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, September 10th. Finally, Bank of America set a $255.00 price target on shares of Costco Wholesale and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 4th. Nine analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $237.94.

In other Costco Wholesale news, Director John W. Meisenbach sold 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, October 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $235.81, for a total value of $707,430.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 8,654 shares in the company, valued at $2,040,699.74. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, VP James P. Murphy sold 15,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, July 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $219.22, for a total transaction of $3,288,300.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 33,834 shares in the company, valued at $7,417,089.48. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 24,000 shares of company stock worth $5,351,100. Company insiders own 0.58% of the company’s stock.

Costco Wholesale Company Profile

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST)

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