Williams-Sonoma Inc. (NYSE:WSM) shares rose 3.8% during mid-day trading on Thursday . The company traded as high as $54.24 and last traded at $54.01, with a volume of 1,046,633 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $52.01.

A number of research analysts have weighed in on WSM shares. Longbow Research started coverage on Williams-Sonoma in a report on Tuesday, May 10th. They set a “neutral” rating on the stock. Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Williams-Sonoma in a report on Thursday, April 14th. Barclays PLC started coverage on Williams-Sonoma in a report on Wednesday, March 30th. They set an “underweight” rating and a $45.00 target price on the stock. Topeka Capital Markets started coverage on Williams-Sonoma in a report on Monday, May 23rd. They set a “buy” rating and a $62.00 target price on the stock. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada upped their target price on Williams-Sonoma from $54.00 to $55.00 and gave the stock a “sector perform” rating in a report on Thursday, May 26th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have given a hold rating, twelve have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $61.27.

The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $52.91 and a 200 day moving average price of $54.36. The firm has a market capitalization of $4.82 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.17.

Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 25th. The company reported $0.53 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.50 by $0.03. The firm earned $1.10 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.08 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.48 earnings per share. Williams-Sonoma’s revenue for the quarter was up 6.5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts expect that Williams-Sonoma Inc. will post $3.58 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, August 26th. Stockholders of record on Friday, July 22nd will be paid a dividend of $0.37 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, July 20th. This represents a $1.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.74%.

In other news, CFO Julie Whalen sold 13,500 shares of Williams-Sonoma stock in a transaction on Wednesday, June 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $52.85, for a total transaction of $713,475.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 22,259 shares in the company, valued at $1,176,388.15. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link.

Several large investors recently bought and sold shares of the company. Century Capital Management LLC increased its stake in Williams-Sonoma by 2.0% in the fourth quarter. Century Capital Management LLC now owns 206,962 shares of the company’s stock valued at $12,089,000 after buying an additional 4,024 shares during the last quarter. US Bancorp DE increased its stake in Williams-Sonoma by 0.8% in the fourth quarter. US Bancorp DE now owns 42,194 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,464,000 after buying an additional 342 shares during the last quarter. TD Asset Management Inc. bought a new stake in Williams-Sonoma during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $1,081,000. Mandatum Life Insurance Co Ltd bought a new stake in Williams-Sonoma during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $2,120,000. Finally, Nicholas Co. Inc. WI increased its stake in Williams-Sonoma by 0.9% in the fourth quarter. Nicholas Co. Inc. WI now owns 138,330 shares of the company’s stock valued at $8,079,000 after buying an additional 1,200 shares during the last quarter.

Williams-Sonoma, Inc is an e-commerce and multi-channel specialty retailer of products for the home with some brands in home furnishings. The Company operates in two segments: e-commerce and retail. The e-commerce segment has the merchandising strategies, which include Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, West Elm, PBteen, Williams-Sonoma Home, Rejuvenation and Mark and Graham, which sells its products through its e-commerce Websites and direct-mail catalogs.

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