Bank of Montreal Can lessened its stake in The Williams Companies, Inc. (NYSE:WMB – Get Rating) by 20.8% during the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 1,841,013 shares of the pipeline company’s stock after selling 484,628 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can owned about 0.15% of Williams Companies worth $47,737,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Franklin Resources Inc. boosted its position in Williams Companies by 0.9% in the 3rd quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 26,090,748 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $676,795,000 after purchasing an additional 227,198 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its position in Williams Companies by 2.9% in the 3rd quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 22,457,508 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $581,067,000 after purchasing an additional 625,697 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp boosted its position in Williams Companies by 10.9% in the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 15,064,224 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $390,767,000 after purchasing an additional 1,477,599 shares in the last quarter. Invesco Ltd. boosted its position in Williams Companies by 32.6% in the 3rd quarter. Invesco Ltd. now owns 14,311,885 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $371,249,000 after purchasing an additional 3,515,615 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Morgan Stanley boosted its position in Williams Companies by 7.6% in the 3rd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 12,085,014 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $313,485,000 after purchasing an additional 848,476 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 86.10% of the company’s stock.
Several equities research analysts have commented on the company. Stifel Nicolaus upped their price objective on Williams Companies from $31.00 to $34.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, March 1st. Wells Fargo & Company reduced their target price on Williams Companies from $40.00 to $39.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a research note on Friday. Mizuho upped their target price on Williams Companies from $35.00 to $39.00 in a research note on Wednesday, May 4th. Zacks Investment Research raised Williams Companies from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $37.00 target price for the company in a research note on Tuesday, March 22nd. Finally, TD Securities upped their target price on Williams Companies from $36.00 to $38.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 4th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, nine have given a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. According to data from MarketBeat, the stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $35.64.
Williams Companies (NYSE:WMB – Get Rating) last issued its earnings results on Monday, May 2nd. The pipeline company reported $0.41 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.36 by $0.05. The company had revenue of $2.52 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.19 billion. Williams Companies had a return on equity of 12.20% and a net margin of 13.95%. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $0.35 EPS. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that The Williams Companies, Inc. will post 1.48 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 27th. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 10th will be issued a $0.425 dividend. This represents a $1.70 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.80%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, June 9th. Williams Companies’s payout ratio is currently 141.67%.
In other Williams Companies news, CEO Alan S. Armstrong sold 156,523 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $30.18, for a total value of $4,723,864.14. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Walter J. Bennett sold 24,219 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $29.70, for a total value of $719,304.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 304,200 shares of company stock valued at $9,437,992. 0.43% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Williams Companies Profile (Get Rating)
The Williams Companies, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an energy infrastructure company primarily in the United States. It operates through Transmission & Gulf of Mexico, Northeast G&P, West, and Gas & NGL Marketing Services segments. The Transmission & Gulf of Mexico segment comprises Transco and Northwest natural gas pipelines; and natural gas gathering and processing, and crude oil production handling and transportation assets in the Gulf Coast region, as well as various petrochemical and feedstock pipelines.
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