Prudential Financial Inc. Increases Stake in Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (WSM)

Prudential Financial Inc. increased its position in shares of Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (NYSE:WSM) by 29.2% during the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The firm owned 235,128 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock after buying an additional 53,170 shares during the quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. owned about 0.28% of Williams-Sonoma worth $11,723,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the business. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in Williams-Sonoma by 4.9% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 9,572,681 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $464,276,000 after purchasing an additional 444,339 shares during the period. Janus Henderson Group PLC raised its position in Williams-Sonoma by 1,109.6% in the second quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 3,517,415 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $170,595,000 after purchasing an additional 3,226,625 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its position in Williams-Sonoma by 0.9% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 3,243,158 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $157,297,000 after purchasing an additional 28,837 shares during the period. FMR LLC raised its position in Williams-Sonoma by 115.4% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 2,678,423 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $129,904,000 after purchasing an additional 1,435,014 shares during the period. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position in Williams-Sonoma by 17.8% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,129,726 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $54,793,000 after purchasing an additional 170,318 shares during the period. 96.62% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Shares of Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (NYSE:WSM) traded up $0.06 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $53.50. 2,124,320 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,733,219. The firm has a market capitalization of $4,544.92, a P/E ratio of 15.33, a P/E/G ratio of 2.00 and a beta of 0.89. Williams-Sonoma, Inc. has a 12-month low of $42.68 and a 12-month high of $56.94.

Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, November 16th. The specialty retailer reported $0.84 EPS for the quarter, hitting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.84. The firm had revenue of $1.30 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.29 billion. Williams-Sonoma had a net margin of 5.94% and a return on equity of 25.45%. The company’s revenue was up 4.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.78 earnings per share. analysts forecast that Williams-Sonoma, Inc. will post 3.54 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, November 22nd. Investors of record on Friday, October 27th were paid a dividend of $0.39 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, October 26th. This represents a $1.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.92%. Williams-Sonoma’s payout ratio is currently 44.19%.

A number of analysts have issued reports on the company. J P Morgan Chase & Co lowered Williams-Sonoma from an “overweight” rating to an “underweight” rating and set a $46.00 target price on the stock. in a research report on Friday, November 17th. Gordon Haskett downgraded shares of Williams-Sonoma from a “hold” rating to a “reduce” rating in a research note on Friday, November 17th. Oppenheimer restated a “hold” rating on shares of Williams-Sonoma in a research note on Friday, November 17th. Morgan Stanley started coverage on shares of Williams-Sonoma in a research note on Friday, November 17th. They issued a “hold” rating and a $48.00 price target for the company. Finally, Bank of America dropped their price target on shares of Williams-Sonoma from $40.00 to $38.00 and set an “underperform” rating for the company in a research note on Friday, November 17th. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have assigned a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $51.39.

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About Williams-Sonoma

Williams-Sonoma, Inc is a multi-channel specialty retailer of products for the home. The Company operates retail stores in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Australia and the United Kingdom. It operates through two segments: e-commerce and retail. The e-commerce segment has various merchandising strategies, such as Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, West Elm, PBteen, Williams-Sonoma Home, Rejuvenation and Mark and Graham, which sell its products through the Company’s e-commerce Websites and direct-mail catalogs.

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

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