Shares of Waste Management Inc. (NYSE:WM) saw unusually-strong trading volume on Tuesday . Approximately 2,045,405 shares traded hands during mid-day trading, a decline of 10% from the previous session’s volume of 2,262,866 shares.The stock last traded at $63.37 and had previously closed at $62.99.

WM has been the subject of several research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Waste Management from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $74.00 target price for the company in a research report on Friday, August 5th. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $75.00 target price (up from $70.00) on shares of Waste Management in a research report on Monday, July 18th. Argus reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $72.00 target price on shares of Waste Management in a research report on Wednesday, August 10th. Barclays PLC lowered shares of Waste Management from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and upped their target price for the stock from $66.00 to $70.00 in a research report on Tuesday, August 9th. Finally, KeyCorp reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Waste Management in a research report on Thursday, July 14th. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Waste Management currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $67.34.

The company’s 50-day moving average price is $64.68 and its 200 day moving average price is $62.29. The firm has a market cap of $27.96 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.70 and a beta of 0.58.

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Waste Management (NYSE:WM) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 27th. The company reported $0.74 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.71 by $0.03. Waste Management had a return on equity of 23.48% and a net margin of 8.73%. The company had revenue of $3.43 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.40 billion. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.67 EPS. Waste Management’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.3% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts predict that Waste Management Inc. will post $2.86 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 23rd. Investors of record on Friday, September 9th will be issued a dividend of $0.41 per share. This represents a $1.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.59%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, September 7th. Waste Management’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 63.81%.

In related news, VP Mark E. Schwartz sold 70,496 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $65.89, for a total transaction of $4,644,981.44. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 67,117 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,422,339.13. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Frank M. Clark sold 449 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $67.21, for a total value of $30,177.29. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 29,084 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,954,735.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.42% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Alexandria Capital LLC increased its position in shares of Waste Management by 2.7% in the second quarter. Alexandria Capital LLC now owns 1,583 shares of the company’s stock valued at $105,000 after buying an additional 41 shares during the last quarter. Hudock Capital Group LLC increased its position in shares of Waste Management by 0.6% in the second quarter. Hudock Capital Group LLC now owns 1,715 shares of the company’s stock valued at $113,000 after buying an additional 11 shares during the last quarter. Cribstone Capital Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Waste Management during the second quarter valued at approximately $132,000. Financial Architects Inc increased its position in shares of Waste Management by 0.8% in the second quarter. Financial Architects Inc now owns 2,003 shares of the company’s stock valued at $132,000 after buying an additional 16 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC increased its position in shares of Waste Management by 320.0% in the second quarter. Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC now owns 2,100 shares of the company’s stock valued at $139,000 after buying an additional 1,600 shares during the last quarter. 75.24% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Waste Management Company Profile

Waste Management, Inc is a holding company. The Company provides waste management environmental services. The Company’s segments include Solid Waste, which includes its 17 Areas aggregated into three tiers, and Other. The Company’s Solid Waste business is operated and managed locally by its subsidiaries that focuses on geographic areas and provides collection, transfer, recycling and resource recovery, and disposal services.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:WM

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