Zacks: Brokerages Expect Western Digital Corp (WDC) to Post $3.08 Earnings Per Share

Wall Street analysts expect Western Digital Corp (NASDAQ:WDC) to post earnings of $3.08 per share for the current fiscal quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Six analysts have issued estimates for Western Digital’s earnings. The lowest EPS estimate is $3.04 and the highest is $3.15. Western Digital posted earnings of $3.56 per share during the same quarter last year, which suggests a negative year over year growth rate of 13.5%. The firm is scheduled to announce its next earnings results on Thursday, October 25th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Western Digital will report full-year earnings of $11.61 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $10.48 to $13.02. For the next fiscal year, analysts expect that the company will post earnings of $11.72 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $9.11 to $13.79. Zacks’ earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that follow Western Digital.

Western Digital (NASDAQ:WDC) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 26th. The data storage provider reported $3.61 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $3.20 by $0.41. Western Digital had a return on equity of 36.35% and a net margin of 3.27%. The business had revenue of $5.12 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.07 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $2.93 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 5.7% on a year-over-year basis.

A number of brokerages have recently commented on WDC. Goldman Sachs Group lowered Western Digital to a “hold” rating and set a $63.00 price target for the company. in a report on Wednesday, September 12th. Royal Bank of Canada lowered Western Digital from an “outperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and cut their price target for the stock from $95.00 to $70.00 in a report on Tuesday, September 11th. Longbow Research set a $100.00 price target on Western Digital and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, September 6th. Cowen lowered Western Digital from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $70.00 price target for the company. in a report on Wednesday, August 15th. Finally, BidaskClub lowered Western Digital from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Thursday, August 2nd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and eighteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. Western Digital presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $100.56.

In other Western Digital news, insider Mark P. Long sold 24,938 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.83, for a total value of $1,766,358.54. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 215,963 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $15,296,659.29. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Michael Charles Ray sold 4,387 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $67.65, for a total value of $296,780.55. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 107,155 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,249,035.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 32,772 shares of company stock worth $2,298,763 over the last quarter. Company insiders own 0.31% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. First National Bank of Omaha lifted its stake in shares of Western Digital by 1.7% during the second quarter. First National Bank of Omaha now owns 37,221 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $2,881,000 after acquiring an additional 640 shares during the period. Augustine Asset Management Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Western Digital by 2.1% during the second quarter. Augustine Asset Management Inc. now owns 33,241 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $2,573,000 after acquiring an additional 674 shares during the period. LS Investment Advisors LLC lifted its stake in shares of Western Digital by 6.5% during the first quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 11,485 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $1,060,000 after acquiring an additional 702 shares during the period. Amalgamated Bank lifted its stake in shares of Western Digital by 1.9% during the second quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 38,520 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $2,982,000 after acquiring an additional 720 shares during the period. Finally, Spectrum Management Group Inc. lifted its stake in Western Digital by 3.4% in the second quarter. Spectrum Management Group Inc. now owns 23,855 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $1,847,000 after buying an additional 775 shares during the period. 83.12% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

WDC opened at $56.96 on Friday. Western Digital has a twelve month low of $53.61 and a twelve month high of $106.96. The company has a market capitalization of $16.48 billion, a P/E ratio of 4.22, a P/E/G ratio of 0.28 and a beta of 0.89. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.95, a current ratio of 2.39 and a quick ratio of 1.73.

Western Digital announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase plan on Thursday, July 26th that authorizes the company to repurchase $5.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the data storage provider to repurchase up to 22.3% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are typically a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 28th will be given a $0.50 dividend. This represents a $2.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.51%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 27th. Western Digital’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 14.80%.

Western Digital Company Profile

Western Digital Corporation develops, manufactures, and sells data storage devices and solutions worldwide. It offers client devices, including hard disk drives (HDDs) and solid state drives (SSDs) for computing devices, such as desktop and notebook PCs, security surveillance systems, gaming consoles, and set top boxes; flash-based embedded storage products for mobile phones, tablets, notebook PCs, and other portable and wearable devices, as well as automotive, IoT, industrial, and connected home applications; flash-based memory wafers; and embedded storage solutions and iNAND embedded flash products, such as multi-chip package solutions.

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