Russell Investments Group Ltd. Sells 183,582 Shares of Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM)

Russell Investments Group Ltd. lessened its holdings in Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WMGet Rating) by 34.4% during the 3rd quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and 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.’s holdings in Waste Management were worth $56,055,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of the company. Desjardins Global Asset Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Waste Management in the 2nd quarter valued at about $25,000. McClarren Financial Advisors Inc. bought a new position in Waste Management during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $25,000. Harel Insurance Investments & Financial Services Ltd. bought a new position in Waste Management during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $30,000. Twin Lakes Capital Management LLC bought a new position in Waste Management during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $31,000. Finally, Urban Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in Waste Management during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $37,000. Institutional investors own 78.48% of the company’s stock.

Waste Management Price Performance

Shares of WM opened at $152.67 on Tuesday. The company has a market cap of $62.67 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.38, a PEG ratio of 1.96 and a beta of 0.73. Waste Management, Inc. has a 1-year low of $138.58 and a 1-year high of $175.98. The company’s fifty day simple moving average is $160.10 and its 200 day simple moving average is $162.35. The company has a current ratio of 0.85, a quick ratio of 0.81 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.97.

Waste Management (NYSE:WMGet Rating) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, October 26th. The business services provider reported $1.56 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.50 by $0.06. The business had revenue of $5.08 billion for 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 firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.26 earnings per share. On average, research analysts forecast that Waste Management, Inc. will post 5.7 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Waste Management declared that its board has approved a share buyback program on Thursday, December 8th that authorizes the company to buyback $1.50 billion in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the business services provider to purchase up to 2.2% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are usually an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

Waste Management Dividend Announcement

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 16th. Investors of record on Friday, December 2nd were issued a dividend of $0.65 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, December 1st. This represents a $2.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.70%. Waste Management’s payout ratio is 48.33%.

Insider Buying and Selling

In related news, Director John C. Pope sold 218 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction 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 transaction, the director now directly owns 55,809 shares in the company, valued at $8,637,000.84. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. 0.18% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

Several research firms recently weighed in on WM. Oppenheimer reduced their price objective on shares of Waste Management to $169.00 in a research note on Thursday, October 20th. StockNews.com downgraded shares of Waste Management from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, December 15th. Morgan Stanley dropped their target price on shares of Waste Management from $180.00 to $177.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, October 27th. UBS Group downgraded shares of Waste Management from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and dropped their target price for the stock from $190.00 to $165.00 in a report on Tuesday, January 10th. Finally, Citigroup initiated coverage on shares of Waste Management in a report on Friday, January 6th. They set a “buy” rating and a $183.00 target price on the stock. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat.com, the company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $171.36.

Waste Management Company Profile

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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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Waste Management (NYSE:WM)

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