Republic Services Inc. (NYSE:RSG) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Republic Services is focused on enhancing its operations by streamlining the cost structure, improving revenue quality and seeking growth through profitable investment opportunities. The company is realigning its field support functions by combining two organizational layers into one and expects these initiatives to contribute about $25 million of annual cost savings from 2018. Republic Services reaffirmed its earlier 2016 adjusted earnings per share and adjusted free cash flow guidance. The company has a positive earnings history in the trailing four quarters. Earnings estimates have also remained steady over the last 30 days. However, it remains exposed to commodity price headwinds and protracted weakness in special waste, industrial volumes and tight municipal budgets, which will likely have a negative impact on earnings. Margins are also expected to remain constrained in the future quarters as well.”

Other equities analysts have also recently issued research reports about the stock. Macquarie initiated coverage on shares of Republic Services in a research note on Thursday, August 25th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $53.00 price target on the stock. Imperial Capital boosted their target price on Republic Services from $52.00 to $58.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 2nd. Finally, Barclays PLC boosted their target price on Republic Services from $52.00 to $56.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 9th. Seven research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $51.90.

Analyst Recommendations for Republic Services (NYSE:RSG)

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Shares of Republic Services (NYSE:RSG) traded up 0.4189% during trading on Tuesday, reaching $50.3601. 298,854 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. Republic Services has a 12 month low of $41.82 and a 12 month high of $52.92. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $50.35 and a 200 day moving average price of $49.63. The firm has a market cap of $17.27 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.2000 and a beta of 0.54.

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, hitting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.55. The company had revenue of $2.35 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.38 billion. Republic Services had a net margin of 7.85% and a return on equity of 9.21%. Republic Services’s revenue was up 1.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.54 EPS. On average, analysts forecast that Republic Services will post $2.16 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, October 14th. Stockholders of record on Monday, October 3rd were given a dividend of $0.32 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, September 29th. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.55%. This is a positive change from Republic Services’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.30. Republic Services’s dividend payout ratio is presently 61.84%.

In related news, insider Donald W. Slager sold 26,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $50.37, for a total value of $1,309,620.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 234,397 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $11,806,576.89. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Insiders own 0.50% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. PineBridge Investments L.P. raised its stake in Republic Services by 526.7% in the second quarter. PineBridge Investments L.P. now owns 2,933 shares of the company’s stock valued at $150,000 after buying an additional 2,465 shares in the last quarter. Mizuho Asset Management Co. Ltd. raised its stake in Republic Services by 73.2% in the second quarter. Mizuho Asset Management Co. Ltd. now owns 3,005 shares of the company’s stock valued at $154,000 after buying an additional 1,270 shares in the last quarter. Farmers National Bank purchased a new stake in Republic Services during the second quarter valued at about $183,000. Reynolds Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in Republic Services during the first quarter valued at about $210,000. Finally, Private Bank & Trust Co. purchased a new stake in Republic Services during the second quarter valued at about $213,000. 61.02% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Republic Services Company Profile

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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