WCM Investment Management LLC raised its stake in shares of UniFirst Corp (NYSE:UNF) by 60.6% in the 1st quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 126,901 shares of the textile maker’s stock after acquiring an additional 47,863 shares during the period. WCM Investment Management LLC owned approximately 0.67% of UniFirst worth $19,479,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd acquired a new stake in shares of UniFirst during the first quarter valued at about $698,000. GAM Holding AG grew its stake in shares of UniFirst by 20.1% during the first quarter. GAM Holding AG now owns 2,210 shares of the textile maker’s stock valued at $339,000 after acquiring an additional 370 shares in the last quarter. CIBC Private Wealth Group LLC grew its stake in shares of UniFirst by 6.8% during the first quarter. CIBC Private Wealth Group LLC now owns 23,237 shares of the textile maker’s stock valued at $3,567,000 after acquiring an additional 1,484 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. grew its stake in shares of UniFirst by 0.4% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,233,667 shares of the textile maker’s stock valued at $342,868,000 after acquiring an additional 9,151 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Magnus Financial Group LLC grew its stake in shares of UniFirst by 14.6% during the first quarter. Magnus Financial Group LLC now owns 1,716 shares of the textile maker’s stock valued at $263,000 after acquiring an additional 219 shares in the last quarter. 77.07% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
In related news, major shareholder The Ronald D. Croatti Trust – 1 sold 5,583 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $154.71, for a total transaction of $863,745.93. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, VP David A. Difillippo sold 883 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $157.85, for a total value of $139,381.55. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 11,162 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,761,921.70. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 8,587 shares of company stock worth $1,336,378. Corporate insiders own 1.00% of the company’s stock.
UniFirst (NYSE:UNF) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, June 26th. The textile maker reported $2.46 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.70 by $0.76. The company had revenue of $453.72 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $441.70 million. UniFirst had a return on equity of 9.67% and a net margin of 9.21%. UniFirst’s quarterly revenue was up 6.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.85 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts forecast that UniFirst Corp will post 8.8 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 27th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 6th will be issued a dividend of $0.1125 per share. This represents a $0.45 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.24%. UniFirst’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 6.04%.
Several analysts have recently weighed in on the company. ValuEngine upgraded UniFirst from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday. Zacks Investment Research upgraded UniFirst from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $173.00 price target for the company in a research note on Saturday, March 30th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. lifted their price target on UniFirst from $155.00 to $183.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. UniFirst has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $169.33.
UniFirst Corporation provides workplace uniforms and protective work wear clothing in the United States, Europe, and Canada. The company operates through U.S. Rental and Cleaning, Canadian Rental and Cleaning, Manufacturing, Specialty Garments Rental and Cleaning, and First Aid segments. It designs, manufactures, personalizes, rents, cleans, delivers, and sells a range of uniforms and protective clothing, including shirts, pants, jackets, coveralls, lab coats, smocks, and aprons; and specialized protective wear, such as flame resistant and high visibility garments.
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