Evercore ISI Begins Coverage on Williams Companies (WMB)

Evercore ISI assumed coverage on shares of Williams Companies (NYSE:WMB) in a report released on Tuesday, February 5th, The Fly reports. The firm issued an outperform rating on the pipeline company’s stock.

Several other brokerages have also issued reports on WMB. Goldman Sachs Group began coverage on shares of Williams Companies in a report on Monday, October 8th. They set a neutral rating and a $26.00 price objective on the stock. Credit Suisse Group initiated coverage on Williams Companies in a report on Thursday, October 11th. They issued an outperform rating and a $35.00 price target on the stock. US Capital Advisors upgraded Williams Companies from a hold rating to an overweight rating in a report on Wednesday, October 17th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Williams Companies from a strong sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Thursday, October 18th. Finally, Seaport Global Securities started coverage on shares of Williams Companies in a research note on Friday, October 19th. They issued a buy rating and a $31.00 price target for the company. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and sixteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. Williams Companies currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $32.07.

Shares of NYSE WMB traded up $0.74 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $27.43. The stock had a trading volume of 10,920,966 shares, compared to its average volume of 7,580,825. The company has a current ratio of 0.72, a quick ratio of 0.66 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.27. Williams Companies has a twelve month low of $20.36 and a twelve month high of $32.22. The firm has a market capitalization of $32.82 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 34.72, a PEG ratio of 4.29 and a beta of 1.71.

Williams Companies (NYSE:WMB) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, February 13th. The pipeline company reported $0.19 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.22 by ($0.03). Williams Companies had a positive return on equity of 4.82% and a negative net margin of 1.78%. The company had revenue of $2.20 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.53 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.36 earnings per share. On average, research analysts anticipate that Williams Companies will post 0.96 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, March 25th. Investors of record on Friday, March 8th will be issued a $0.38 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 7th. This represents a $1.52 annualized dividend and a yield of 5.54%. This is an increase from Williams Companies’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.34. Williams Companies’s dividend payout ratio is presently 172.15%.

In related news, Director Kathleen B. Cooper sold 9,615 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, February 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $27.39, for a total value of $263,354.85. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 32,272 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $883,930.08. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Walter J. Bennett sold 14,859 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, February 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.13, for a total transaction of $403,124.67. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 116,881 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,170,981.53. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.50% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of WMB. JNBA Financial Advisors increased its position in shares of Williams Companies by 68.6% in the 4th quarter. JNBA Financial Advisors now owns 1,180 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $26,000 after purchasing an additional 480 shares during the last quarter. Claybrook Capital LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Williams Companies in the 4th quarter valued at approximately $26,000. JOYN Advisors Inc. increased its position in shares of Williams Companies by 57.9% in the 4th quarter. JOYN Advisors Inc. now owns 1,262 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $28,000 after purchasing an additional 463 shares during the last quarter. Oakworth Capital Inc. grew its position in shares of Williams Companies by 381.7% in the 4th quarter. Oakworth Capital Inc. now owns 1,262 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $28,000 after buying an additional 1,000 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Sontag Advisory LLC purchased a new position in shares of Williams Companies in the 4th quarter valued at $30,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 87.65% of the company’s stock.

About Williams Companies

The Williams Companies, Inc operates as an energy infrastructure company primarily in the United States. It owns and operates natural gas pipeline system extending from Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and the Gulf of Mexico through Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey to the New York City metropolitan area.

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