Western Digital Corporation (WDC): Street Finally Waking Up


    SSgA Funds Management, Inc. recently announced the acquisition of new stake in Western Digital Corporation (NASDAQ:WDC). The institutional investor has increased its shareholding in the Technology company by 0.87% to 12.51 million shares with purchase of 0.11 million shares. This fresh investment now brings its stake to 4.18% valued currently at $539.28 million. In addition, Fidelity Management & Research Co.. raised its holdings by 4.24 million to 11.89 million shares. And Franklin Mutual Advisers LLC has lifted its position by 32.84% or 2.36 million shares – to 9.55 million shares.

    With over 11.73 million Western Digital Corporation (WDC) shares trading Friday and a closing price of $37.84 on the day, the dollar volume was approximately $443.98 million. The shares have shown a positive weekly performance of 12.25% and its price on 08/28/20 gained nearly 7.38%. Currently, there are 299.00M common shares owned by the public and among those 298.13M shares have been available to trade.

    An analysis of what Wall Street brokers have to say about the expected price targets for this stock gives us this picture: 30 analysts who have offered their price forecasts for WDC have a consensus price objective of $52.44. The analysts have set the share’s price value over the next 12 months at a high of $90.00 and a low of $40.00 should the stock experience a downside. Incidentally, analysts’ outlook for the Western Digital Corporation stock is 2.20 for the next 12 months. The average price target is 26.51% above its last price level and an upside to the estimated low will see the stock gain 5.4% over that period. But an upside of 57.96% will see the stock hit the forecast high price target while mean target price for the stock is $51.00.

    Insiders at the company have transacted a total of 89 times over the past 12 months, according to data filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). 46 of these insider trades were purchases, accounting for 641,690 shares. Insider sales of the common stock occurred on 43 occasions, with total insider shares sold totaling 253,409 shares.

    The top 3 mutual fund holders in Western Digital Corporation are Vanguard Total Stock Market Index, Vanguard Mid Cap Index Fund, and Vanguard 500 Index Fund. Vanguard Total Stock Market Index owns 8.08 million shares of the company’s stock, all valued at over $348.4 million. The company sold 49562.0 shares recently to bring their total holdings to about 2.70% of the shares outstanding. Vanguard Mid Cap Index Fund sold 56629.0 shares to see its total holdings shrink to 6.98 million shares valued at over $300.96 million and representing 2.33% of the shares outstanding. Vanguard 500 Index Fund sold 37347.0 shares to bring its total holdings to over 6.18 million shares at a value of $266.4 million. Vanguard 500 Index Fund now owns shares totaling to 2.06% of the shares outstanding.

    Shares of Western Digital Corporation (NASDAQ: WDC) opened at $35.46, up $0.22 from a prior closing price of $35.24. However, the script later closed the day at $37.84, up 7.38%. The company’s stock has a 5-day price change of 12.25% and -12.15% over the past three months. WDC shares are trading -40.38% year to date (YTD), with the 12-month market performance down to -31.30% lower. It has a 12-month low price of $27.40 and touched a high of $72.00 over the same period. Currently, 11.73 million shares have been traded, compared to an average intraday trading volume of 5.76 million shares. The stock is trading above its simple moving averages at the SMA20, SMA50, and SMA200, as the current price level is off by 1.71%, -7.09%, and -22.70% respectively.

    Institutional ownership of Western Digital Corporation (NASDAQ: WDC) shares accounts for 81.90% of the company’s 299.00M shares outstanding. Mutual fund holders own 48.63%, while other institutional holders and individual stakeholders account for 5.75% and 33.18% respectively.

    It has a market capitalization of $10.56B and a beta (3y monthly) value of 1.46. The earnings-per-share (ttm) stands at -$0.85. Price movements for the stock have been influenced by the stock’s volatility, which stands at 3.86% over the week and 3.14% over the month.

    Analysts forecast that Western Digital Corporation (WDC) will achieve an EPS of $0.55 for the current quarter, $0.67 for the next quarter and $6.32 for 2022. The lowest estimate earnings-per-share for the quarter is $0.5 while analysts give the company a high EPS estimate of $0.7. Comparatively, EPS for the current quarter was $0.34 a year ago. Earnings per share for the fiscal year are expected to decrease by -130.60%, and 95.12% over the next financial year.

    If you are looking to buy this stock, then you may note that the average analyst recommendation by 30 brokerage firm advisors rate Western Digital Corporation (WDC) as a “Moderate Buy” at a consensus score of 2.20. Specifically, 15 Wall Street analysts polled rate the stock as a buy, while 12 of the 30 advise that investors “hold,” and 0 rated it as a “Sell.”

    Looking at the support for the WDC, a number of firms have released research notes about the stock. The Benchmark Company stated their Buy rating for the stock in a research note on August 06, 2020, with the firm’s price target at $60-$52. Cowen coverage for the Western Digital Corporation (WDC) stock in a research note released on August 06, 2020 offered a Outperform rating with a price target of $50. Craig Hallum was of a view on August 06, 2020 that the stock is Hold, while Bernstein gave the stock Outperform rating on July 15, 2020, issuing a price target of $60. The Benchmark Company on their part issued Buy rating on June 22, 2020.


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