Western Digital (WDC) Rating Lowered to Neutral at JPMorgan Chase & Co.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded shares of Western Digital (NASDAQ:WDC) from an overweight rating to a neutral rating in a research report released on Friday, Marketbeat.com reports. The firm currently has $62.00 price objective on the data storage provider’s stock, down from their prior price objective of $117.00.

Other equities analysts have also issued reports about the stock. TheStreet upgraded shares of Western Digital from a c+ rating to a b rating in a report on Thursday, July 26th. Mizuho restated a buy rating on shares of Western Digital in a report on Friday, July 27th. Bank of America cut their price objective on shares of Western Digital from $120.00 to $110.00 and set a buy rating on the stock in a report on Friday, July 27th. Stifel Nicolaus cut their price objective on shares of Western Digital from $114.00 to $93.00 and set a buy rating on the stock in a report on Friday, July 27th. Finally, Maxim Group restated a buy rating and issued a $126.00 price objective on shares of Western Digital in a report on Friday, July 27th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have given a hold rating and thirteen have given a buy rating to the stock. Western Digital presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $88.13.

NASDAQ WDC traded down $9.82 during trading hours on Friday, hitting $44.19. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 29,760,435 shares, compared to its average volume of 4,469,562. Western Digital has a twelve month low of $42.00 and a twelve month high of $106.96. The firm has a market capitalization of $15.67 billion, a P/E ratio of 4.10, a P/E/G ratio of 0.27 and a beta of 0.90. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.95, a current ratio of 2.39 and a quick ratio of 1.73.



Western Digital (NASDAQ:WDC) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 26th. The data storage provider reported $3.61 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $3.20 by $0.41. Western Digital had a net margin of 2.46% and a return on equity of 35.37%. The business had revenue of $5.12 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.07 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $2.93 earnings per share. Western Digital’s revenue was up 5.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Sell-side analysts expect that Western Digital will post 10.45 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Western Digital announced that its Board of Directors has approved a stock buyback plan on Thursday, July 26th that permits the company to repurchase $5.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization permits the data storage provider to reacquire up to 22.3% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are usually a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 28th were paid a $0.50 dividend. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.53%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, September 27th. Western Digital’s payout ratio is presently 14.80%.

In other news, insider Mark P. Long sold 24,938 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, July 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.83, for a total transaction of $1,766,358.54. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 215,963 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $15,296,659.29. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Michael Charles Ray sold 4,387 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, August 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $67.65, for a total transaction of $296,780.55. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 107,155 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $7,249,035.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 32,772 shares of company stock valued at $2,298,763 in the last ninety days. Insiders own 0.36% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Ruggie Capital Group bought a new stake in shares of Western Digital during the second quarter worth $100,000. Migdal Insurance & Financial Holdings Ltd. increased its position in shares of Western Digital by 16,520.0% during the second quarter. Migdal Insurance & Financial Holdings Ltd. now owns 1,662 shares of the data storage provider’s stock worth $129,000 after acquiring an additional 1,652 shares in the last quarter. TRUE Private Wealth Advisors bought a new stake in shares of Western Digital during the third quarter worth $107,000. NEXT Financial Group Inc bought a new stake in shares of Western Digital during the third quarter worth $109,000. Finally, Legacy Financial Advisors Inc. increased its position in shares of Western Digital by 32,283.3% during the second quarter. Legacy Financial Advisors Inc. now owns 1,943 shares of the data storage provider’s stock worth $155,000 after acquiring an additional 1,937 shares in the last quarter. 83.57% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Western Digital

Western Digital Corporation develops, manufactures, and sells data storage devices and solutions worldwide. It offers client devices, including hard disk drives (HDDs) and solid state drives (SSDs) for computing devices, such as desktop and notebook PCs, security surveillance systems, gaming consoles, and set top boxes; flash-based embedded storage products for mobile phones, tablets, notebook PCs, and other portable and wearable devices, as well as automotive, IoT, industrial, and connected home applications; flash-based memory wafers; and embedded storage solutions and iNAND embedded flash products, such as multi-chip package solutions.

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Analyst Recommendations for Western Digital (NASDAQ:WDC)

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