WBI Investments Inc. Increases Stake in Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (WSM)

WBI Investments Inc. lifted its position in Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (NYSE:WSM) by 208.3% in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 438,649 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock after acquiring an additional 296,381 shares during the period. Williams-Sonoma accounts for about 1.2% of WBI Investments Inc.’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 23rd largest holding. WBI Investments Inc. owned about 0.52% of Williams-Sonoma worth $23,143,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other large investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. First Long Island Investors LLC raised its position in shares of Williams-Sonoma by 0.4% in the 4th quarter. First Long Island Investors LLC now owns 238,382 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $12,324,000 after acquiring an additional 992 shares in the last quarter. Ironwood Investment Management LLC raised its position in shares of Williams-Sonoma by 11.1% in the 4th quarter. Ironwood Investment Management LLC now owns 10,739 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $555,000 after acquiring an additional 1,075 shares in the last quarter. Advisor Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Williams-Sonoma by 21.8% in the 4th quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 6,112 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $315,000 after acquiring an additional 1,094 shares in the last quarter. Hutchinson Capital Management CA raised its position in shares of Williams-Sonoma by 0.3% in the 4th quarter. Hutchinson Capital Management CA now owns 355,512 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $18,380,000 after acquiring an additional 1,163 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Peloton Wealth Strategists raised its position in shares of Williams-Sonoma by 7.3% in the 1st quarter. Peloton Wealth Strategists now owns 17,664 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $932,000 after acquiring an additional 1,203 shares in the last quarter.

In related news, insider Janet Hayes sold 9,034 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, March 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.66, for a total value of $466,696.44. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 38,563 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,992,164.58. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Laura Alber sold 97,965 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, March 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $54.21, for a total value of $5,310,682.65. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 264,621 shares in the company, valued at $14,345,104.41. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.00% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

WSM has been the subject of several research reports. Zacks Investment Research raised Williams-Sonoma from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $57.00 target price for the company in a research report on Saturday, February 3rd. Deutsche Bank upped their price target on Williams-Sonoma from $50.00 to $53.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday. Loop Capital restated a “hold” rating and issued a $58.00 price target on shares of Williams-Sonoma in a research note on Thursday. Stifel Nicolaus upped their price target on Williams-Sonoma from $54.00 to $58.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 15th. Finally, Gordon Haskett upgraded Williams-Sonoma from a “reduce” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $61.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, March 14th. Eight investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have given a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Williams-Sonoma currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $52.20.

NYSE WSM opened at $54.64 on Thursday. The firm has a market cap of $3.98 billion, a PE ratio of 15.15, a PEG ratio of 0.87 and a beta of 0.73. The company has a current ratio of 1.62, a quick ratio of 0.57 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.25. Williams-Sonoma, Inc. has a 1-year low of $42.68 and a 1-year high of $56.38.

Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 23rd. The specialty retailer reported $0.67 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.09. The firm had revenue of $1.20 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.16 billion. Williams-Sonoma had a return on equity of 26.06% and a net margin of 4.90%. The company’s revenue was up 8.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.51 EPS. analysts forecast that Williams-Sonoma, Inc. will post 4.18 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Williams-Sonoma declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Wednesday, March 14th that authorizes the company to repurchase $286.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the specialty retailer to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 25th. Investors of record on Friday, April 27th will be issued a $0.43 dividend. This is a boost from Williams-Sonoma’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.39. This represents a $1.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.15%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, April 26th. Williams-Sonoma’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 47.65%.

About Williams-Sonoma

Williams-Sonoma, Inc operates as a multi-channel specialty retailer of various products for home. It operates through two segments, E-commerce and Retail. The company offers cooking, dining, and entertaining products, including cookware, tools, electrics, cutlery, tabletop and bar, outdoor, furniture, and a library of cookbooks under the Williams Sonoma brand, as well as home furnishings and decorative accessories under the Williams Sonoma Home brand; and furniture, bedding, bathroom accessories, rugs, curtains, lighting, tabletop, outdoor, and decorative accessories under the Pottery Barn brand.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM)

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