Gamco Investors INC. ET AL lowered its stake in shares of Costco Wholesale Co. (NASDAQ:COST) by 4.7% in the third quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The institutional investor owned 10,995 shares of the retailer’s stock after selling 540 shares during the quarter. Gamco Investors INC. ET AL’s holdings in Costco Wholesale were worth $2,583,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other hedge funds also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in Costco Wholesale by 3.3% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 27,121,793 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $5,667,910,000 after buying an additional 858,755 shares during the last quarter. FMR LLC lifted its stake in Costco Wholesale by 13.5% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 10,570,895 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $2,209,107,000 after buying an additional 1,256,873 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp lifted its stake in Costco Wholesale by 0.6% in the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 6,229,389 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $1,301,817,000 after buying an additional 37,778 shares during the last quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC lifted its stake in Costco Wholesale by 3.2% in the third quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 2,680,719 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $629,647,000 after buying an additional 82,875 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. lifted its stake in Costco Wholesale by 1.3% in the second quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 1,800,072 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $376,180,000 after buying an additional 23,227 shares during the last quarter. 71.61% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

A number of research firms have issued reports on COST. BidaskClub upgraded Costco Wholesale from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 23rd. Northcoast Research upgraded Costco Wholesale from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, October 12th. Argus reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $255.00 target price on shares of Costco Wholesale in a research note on Thursday, October 11th. Loop Capital set a $265.00 price objective on shares of Costco Wholesale and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 10th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada cut their price objective on shares of Costco Wholesale from $255.00 to $253.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, October 5th. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, nineteen have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $237.94.

In related news, Director John W. Meisenbach sold 3,000 shares of Costco Wholesale stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $235.81, for a total value of $707,430.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 8,654 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,040,699.74. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider W Craig Jelinek sold 22,500 shares of Costco Wholesale stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $223.52, for a total value of $5,029,200.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 322,958 shares in the company, valued at approximately $72,187,572.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 64,312 shares of company stock worth $14,547,272. 0.58% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

NASDAQ:COST opened at $234.48 on Tuesday. The stock has a market cap of $104.18 billion, a P/E ratio of 34.33, a PEG ratio of 3.03 and a beta of 0.91. Costco Wholesale Co. has a 52-week low of $167.05 and a 52-week high of $245.16. The company has a current ratio of 1.02, a quick ratio of 0.46 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.50.

Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST) last released its earnings results on Thursday, October 4th. The retailer reported $2.36 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.34 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $44.41 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $44.17 billion. Costco Wholesale had a return on equity of 24.67% and a net margin of 2.21%. Costco Wholesale’s revenue was up 5.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $2.08 earnings per share. Sell-side analysts anticipate that Costco Wholesale Co. will post 7.7 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, November 23rd. Investors of record on Friday, November 9th will be issued a dividend of $0.57 per share. This represents a $2.28 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.97%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, November 8th. Costco Wholesale’s payout ratio is currently 33.38%.

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Costco Wholesale Profile

Costco Wholesale Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates membership warehouses. It offers branded and private-label products in a range of merchandise categories. The company provides dry and packaged foods, and groceries; snack foods, candies, alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages, and cleaning supplies; appliances, electronics, health and beauty aids, hardware, and garden and patio products; meat, bakery, deli, and produces; and apparel and small appliances.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST)

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