) reached a 52-week high of $57.04 on Friday, May 10, 2013,
gaining momentum from solid fourth quarter results and dividend
hike announced in mid-March. The closing price of shares on May
10 was $56.93, yielding a superb year-to-date return of
Share Price Drivers
WSM surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for both earnings
and revenues in the fourth quarter. Earnings of $1.34 increased
15% while revenues grew almost 11% year over year. The company
also provided a solid outlook for 2013.
Moreover, in conjunction with the earnings release,
Williams-Sonoma board authorized a 41.0% increase in its dividend
and a new stock buyback plan.
WSM increased its quarterly dividend to 31 cents from 22
cents. This marks an annual dividend of $1.24 per share,
resulting in a current dividend yield of 2.4%. The new share
repurchase plan authorizes buyback of shares worth $750 million.
The plan is intended to be executed over the next 3 years.
Further Williams-Sonoma opened four new stores at Bondi
Junction in Sydney, Australia and launched new websites in order
to improve interaction with customers. In fact, the new stores
marked the company's expansion to international markets. This
opening is a part of the company's global expansion strategy.
In addition, the company launched its new Spring 2013 catalog
and a fresh look for its Williams-Sonoma Home brand of
furnishings and home decor items on Mar 28. All these activities
are likely to boost the company's top line in the upcoming
Williams-Sonoma carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Other stocks in the retail furnishing industry that are
currently performing well include
Fortune Brands Home & Security, Inc.
Haverty Furniture Companies Inc.
) carrying a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and
The Home Depot, Inc.
) carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
FORTUNE BRD H&S (FBHS): Free Stock Analysis
HOME DEPOT (HD): Free Stock Analysis Report
HAVERTY FURNIT (HVT): Free Stock Analysis
WILLIAMS-SONOMA (WSM): Free Stock Analysis
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