Costco Wholesale Corp. (COST) Shares Active after Upgrade at Northcoast Research

Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST) shares rose in value in early trade Wednesday with slower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a upgraded rating.

Analysts at Northcoast Research upgraded shares of Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST) from Neutral to Buy today. With a rating of Buy on the stock, Costco Wholesale Corp. has a 52-week high of $169.73. A number of other analysts have spoken on the stock in recent days, and Costco Wholesale Corp. has secured a consensus one-year price target of $169.65, higher than the opening price of $150.70. Usually, after analysts publish an upgrade report on a stock, they will later issue periodic updates, usually followed by a price target change.

U.S. stocks mostly climbed on Wednesday as crude-oil prices traded above $51 a barrel.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.18% gained 33 points, or 0.2% at 18,195, the S&P 500 index SPX, +0.07% advanced 2 points, or less than 0.1%, at 2,141, while the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, -0.08% traded little-changed at 5,240.

U.S. stocks closed higher Tuesday as investors welcomed stronger-than-expected quarterly results from a host of companies

The S&P 500 index SPX, +0.62% finished up 13.10 points, or 0.6%, at 2,139.60, with all 11 main sectors trading higher.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.42% rose 75.54 points, or 0.4%, to close at 18,161.94.

Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +0.85% added 44.01 points, or 0.9%, to close at 5,243.84.

Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST) shares last traded at $150.31, a spike of $1.20 or 0.80% compared to the previous closing price. Opening at $150.70, they ranged from $150.16 and $151.32 throughout the day.

Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST) currently has a market cap of 65.76B.

Costco Wholesale Corp.Trading Volume

366,974 shares traded hands yesterday, lower than normal, out of a total float 430,033,000. Trading volume is likely to increase in the next few days as swing traders often use swings in trading volume to determine heavy volume accumulation or dissemination by institutional investors.

However, just a day of heavy buy side trading is not enough to determine a trend. So market traders will continue to watch for institutional sponsorship as a cue that financial institutions are moving forward.

Institutional sponsorship commonly refers to ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

Institutional investors such as these retain teams of analysts that research thousands of stocks. So watching their interests is a good way to make sure you are buying the right stocks.

Costco Wholesale Corp. Moving Averages

A moving average can also act as support or resistance. In an uptrend a 50-day, 100-day or 200-day moving average may act as a support level, as shown in the figure below.

This is because the average acts like a floor (support), so the price bounces up off of it.

In a downtrend a moving average may act as resistance; like a ceiling, the price hits it and then starts to drop again.

Traders are able to make make more useful decisions on trades when they track the trading habits of professional investors.

With that in mind, Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST) now has a 50-day MA of $152.24 and 200-day MA of $155.95. It has traded in a 52-week range between $138.57 – 169.73 and today’s last price is 11.44%% lower than the 52 week high of $169.73.

Indeed, earnings growth is among the most critical things to look at in regards to stock investing and, accordingly, investors seek companies that have grown their earnings by at least 25% for a 3 year period.

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