Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST) was the recipient of unusually large options trading activity on Wednesday. Traders acquired 6,031 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 231% compared to the typical volume of 1,822 put options.

Several brokerages recently commented on COST. TheStreet raised shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation from a “c” rating to a “b” rating in a research note on Monday, October 9th. Robert W. Baird set a $200.00 target price on shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Stifel Nicolaus set a $173.00 price objective on shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 3rd. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation in a research report on Thursday, August 24th. Finally, Cowen and Company set a $180.00 price objective on shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Saturday, July 22nd. Twelve analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seventeen have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $178.34.

In other news, insider John D. Mckay sold 8,111 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $172.78, for a total value of $1,401,418.58. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 66,751 shares in the company, valued at $11,533,237.78. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director John W. Meisenbach sold 1,000 shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $164.92, for a total transaction of $164,920.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 6,974 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,150,152.08. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 30,842 shares of company stock valued at $5,128,658 in the last quarter. Corporate insiders own 0.74% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of COST. Delta Asset Management LLC TN lifted its stake in Costco Wholesale Corporation by 11.6% during the 2nd quarter. Delta Asset Management LLC TN now owns 627 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $100,000 after acquiring an additional 65 shares during the period. Almanack Investment Partners LLC. purchased a new stake in shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation during the 2nd quarter valued at about $101,000. Wealthcare Advisory Partners LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation during the 3rd quarter valued at about $102,000. Jacobus Wealth Management Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation during the 3rd quarter valued at about $103,000. Finally, Northwest Investment Counselors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation during the 2nd quarter valued at about $107,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.76% of the company’s stock.

Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST) opened at $170.98 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.59, a quick ratio of 0.43 and a current ratio of 0.99. The stock has a market cap of $74,720.00, a PE ratio of 29.46, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.74 and a beta of 0.93. Costco Wholesale Corporation has a one year low of $149.52 and a one year high of $183.18.

Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, October 5th. The retailer reported $2.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.02 by $0.06. The business had revenue of $42.30 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $41.55 billion. Costco Wholesale Corporation had a net margin of 2.08% and a return on equity of 22.21%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 15.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.77 EPS. equities research analysts forecast that Costco Wholesale Corporation will post 6.45 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, November 17th will be paid a dividend of $0.50 per share. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.17%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, November 16th. Costco Wholesale Corporation’s dividend payout ratio is currently 32.89%.

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About Costco Wholesale Corporation

Costco Wholesale Corporation is engaged in the operation of membership warehouses in the United States and Puerto Rico, Canada, the United Kingdom, Mexico, Japan, Australia, Spain, and through its subsidiaries in Taiwan and Korea. As of August 28, 2016, the Company operated 715 warehouses across the world.

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