Republic Services Inc. (NYSE:RSG)’s share price gapped up before the market opened on Thursday . The stock had previously closed at $51.41, but opened at $51.52. Republic Services shares last traded at $51.77, with a volume of 464,638 shares changing hands.

Several equities analysts have recently commented on the stock. Imperial Capital boosted their price target on shares of Republic Services from $52.00 to $58.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 2nd. Barclays PLC boosted their price target on shares of Republic Services from $52.00 to $56.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Tuesday. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Republic Services from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $55.00 price target on the stock in a report on Wednesday, June 29th. Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. assumed coverage on shares of Republic Services in a report on Wednesday, May 4th. They set a “market perform” rating on the stock. Finally, Argus assumed coverage on shares of Republic Services in a report on Wednesday, May 18th. They set a “hold” rating and a $50.00 price target on the stock. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Republic Services has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $51.56.

The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $51.53 and a 200-day moving average price of $48.08. The stock has a market capitalization of $17.76 billion and a PE ratio of 24.90.

Republic Services (NYSE:RSG) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.55 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.55. The business earned $2.35 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.38 billion. The company’s revenue was up 1.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.54 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts expect that Republic Services Inc. will post $2.16 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 14th. Shareholders of record on Monday, October 3rd will be given a $0.32 dividend. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.47%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 29th. This is a boost from Republic Services’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.30.

In other Republic Services news, CEO Donald W. Slager sold 106,112 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $48.52, for a total value of $5,148,554.24. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 232,709 shares in the company, valued at approximately $11,291,040.68. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, EVP Michael P. Rissman sold 61,768 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, June 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $49.41, for a total transaction of $3,051,956.88. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 37,552 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,855,444.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of institutional investors have made changes to their positions in the stock. Advantus Capital Management Inc boosted its position in shares of Republic Services by 2.6% in the fourth quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc now owns 23,073 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,015,000 after buying an additional 582 shares during the period. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management CO. LTD. boosted its position in shares of Republic Services by 5.1% in the fourth quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management CO. LTD. now owns 32,384 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,425,000 after buying an additional 1,573 shares during the period. Gluskin Sheff & Assoc Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Republic Services during the fourth quarter valued at about $1,761,000. Utah Retirement Systems boosted its position in shares of Republic Services by 0.5% in the fourth quarter. Utah Retirement Systems now owns 43,479 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,913,000 after buying an additional 200 shares during the period. Finally, KBC Group NV boosted its position in shares of Republic Services by 67.6% in the fourth quarter. KBC Group NV now owns 54,456 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,396,000 after buying an additional 21,957 shares during the period.

Republic Services, Inc is a provider of non-hazardous solid waste collection, transfer, disposal, recycling and energy services in the United States. The Company operates through three segments: East, Central and West. The Company operates in over 40 states and Puerto Rico through approximately 340 collection operations, over 200 transfer stations, over 190 active landfills, approximately 70 recycling centers, approximately 10 treatment, recovery and disposal facilities, and over 10 salt water disposal wells.

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