The Williams Companies, Inc. (WMB): Analyst Sentiment Positive Or Negative?

Analysts at BofA/Merrill lifted target price for shares of The Williams Companies, Inc. (NYSE:WMB) but repeated their Buy recommendation for the stock in their opinion released on November 02. The price target has been raised from $38 to $33.

By watching the trading activity of corporate insiders, it will become easier to get a sense of The Williams Companies, Inc. (NYSE:WMB)’s prospects. The earliest insider trade took place on 11/29/2018. Cooper Kathleen B parted with a total of 9.76 thousand shares of company at average share price of $25.6. The total for the sales was set at $249.86 thousand. After this transaction, the Director account balance stood at 41.89 thousand shares. The stock lost -4.18 percent since that insider sale. On 11/06/2018, Zamarin Chad J., Senior Vice President – CSD, purchased 2.5 thousand shares at a price per share of $25.69. This added 64.23 thousand shares to the insider’s fortune and the stock saw a -4.52 percent retreat in value since the news became public. This transaction left 28.97 thousand shares in the Senior Vice President – CSD account. On 11/02/2018, Executive Vice President & COO Dunn Micheal G. performed a purchase transaction worth $63.85 thousand. This purchase at $25.54 each has added 2.5 thousand shares into the insider’s portfolio position. Meanwhile, shares have recorded -3.95 percent decrease since the transaction was reported. The insider now is left with 41.34 thousand shares remaining in the account. Creel Michael A, who performs the Director job, bought 25 thousand shares for $644.25 thousand. The acquisition occurred on 11/02/2018 was priced at $25.77 per share. The share price plunged -4.81 percent since the reporting date. Creel Michael A now left with a stake of 38.41 thousand WMB stock worth $942.12 thousand after the insider buying.

The Williams Companies, Inc. (WMB) is expected to jump by 34.33 percent over the next 12 months, according to price target estimates compiled by finviz. Meanwhile, they have set a $39-month high price target. This represents a whopping 58.99 percent increase from where shares are trading today. The 12-month median price target assigned by the analysts stands at $32.5, which represents a return potential of 32.49 percent when compared to the closing price of the stock of $24.53 on Thursday, December 06. The lowest price target for the stock is $27 — slightly more than 10.07 percent from WMB’s current share price.

The shares are currently floating around the first support level of $23.98. Below this, the next support is placed in the zone of $23.42. Till the time, the WMB stock trades above this level, bulls have nothing to fear. On momentum oscillators front, ‘RSI’ has touched 41.01 on daily chart, which may remain a cause for concern. If the price breaks below $23.42 level on closing basis, then we may see more profit booking and the stock may show further weakness. On the flipside, hitting the $24.9 mark may result into a pull-back move towards $25.26 level.

WMB shares dropped -0.52 points or -2.08 percent on Thursday to $24.53 with a heavy trade volume of 14.413 million shares. After opening the session at $24.7, the shares went as high as $24.71 and as low as $23.79, the range within which the stock’s price traded throughout the day. The firm is left with a market cap of $30 billion and now has 1.22 billion shares outstanding. The Williams Companies, Inc. (WMB) stock has lost -4.63 percent of market value in 21 trading days.

WMB stock has a trailing 3-year beta of 1.6, offering the possibility of a higher rate of return, but also posing more risk. The portion of a company’s profit allocated to each outstanding share of common stock was $0.18 a share in the trailing twelve months. The stock’s value has fallen -19.55 percent year to date (YTD) against a decline of -15.62 percent in 12 month’s time. The company’s shares still trade -27.15 percent away from its 1-year high of $33.67 and 4.21 percent up from 52-week low of $23.54. The average consensus rating on the company is 1.9, on a scale where 5 equates to a unanimous sell rating. In short, the mean analyst recommendations are calling this stock a buy.

Shares of The Williams Companies, Inc. (WMB) are trading at a P/E ratio of 49.34 times earnings reported for the past 12 months. The industry WMB operates in has an average P/E of 45.26. Its P/E ratio went as low as 15.41X and as high as 60.1 over the 5-year span. Further, it is sporting a 3.44 on the Price-to-Sales ratio. Compare this with the industry average P/S of 3.15. 67.7 percent is the gross profit margin for The Williams Companies, Inc. and operating margin sits at 13.9 percent. Along with this, the net profit margin is 24.1 percent.

WMB will be showing off its Q4 earnings on February 20. Analysts are forecasting revenue to climb 2.1 percent to $2.28B in the next fiscal quarter, while earnings are seen soaring by nearly -30.56 percent to $0.25 per share. History has shown that shares in The Williams Companies, Inc. have gone down on 20 different earnings reaction days and are predicted to add 0.03 percent when the company reports upcoming earnings. In last reported earnings results, it earned $0.13 per share, worse than the $0.21, adjusted, expected by Thomson Reuters consensus estimate. Revenue was $2.3B, better than the $2.08B analysts expected. Earnings are estimated to increase by 151.7 percent this year, 29.76 percent next year and continue to increase by 8 percent annually for the next 5 years.