Moody’s (NYSE:MCO) Upgraded by Barclays to “Overweight”

Barclays upgraded shares of Moody’s (NYSE:MCOFree Report) from an equal weight rating to an overweight rating in a research note released on Tuesday morning, Marketbeat Ratings reports. The brokerage currently has $450.00 target price on the business services provider’s stock, up from their previous target price of $375.00.

A number of other research analysts also recently issued reports on the company. BMO Capital Markets cut their price objective on Moody’s from $430.00 to $414.00 and set an outperform rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, February 14th. Stifel Nicolaus dropped their price target on Moody’s from $362.00 to $350.00 and set a hold rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, February 14th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. dropped their price target on Moody’s from $420.00 to $410.00 and set an overweight rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, February 14th. UBS Group upped their price target on Moody’s from $355.00 to $380.00 and gave the stock a neutral rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 14th. Finally, Oppenheimer dropped their price target on Moody’s from $427.00 to $411.00 and set an outperform rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, February 14th. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the company has an average rating of Moderate Buy and a consensus target price of $397.75.

Get Our Latest Research Report on MCO

Moody’s Trading Down 0.7 %

Shares of NYSE:MCO opened at $391.20 on Tuesday. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $387.44 and a 200 day moving average of $364.04. The company has a market cap of $71.39 billion, a PE ratio of 44.81, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.15 and a beta of 1.27. The company has a current ratio of 1.74, a quick ratio of 1.74 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.01. Moody’s has a 12-month low of $290.98 and a 12-month high of $407.62.

Moody’s (NYSE:MCOGet Free Report) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, February 13th. The business services provider reported $2.19 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.33 by ($0.14). The company had revenue of $1.48 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.48 billion. Moody’s had a net margin of 27.16% and a return on equity of 55.23%. The company’s revenue was up 14.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.60 earnings per share. As a group, equities research analysts expect that Moody’s will post 10.66 EPS for the current year.

Moody’s Increases Dividend

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, February 23rd were given a dividend of $0.85 per share. This is an increase from Moody’s’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.77. This represents a $3.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.87%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, February 22nd. Moody’s’s dividend payout ratio is currently 38.95%.

Insider Activity

In other news, CEO Robert Fauber sold 2,547 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, January 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $376.50, for a total transaction of $958,945.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 54,099 shares in the company, valued at approximately $20,368,273.50. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Corporate insiders own 0.07% of the company’s stock.

Institutional Trading of Moody’s

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of MCO. Markel Corp raised its holdings in Moody’s by 0.8% during the 1st quarter. Markel Corp now owns 212,990 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $71,865,000 after buying an additional 1,750 shares during the period. Raymond James Trust N.A. increased its stake in Moody’s by 6.8% in the first quarter. Raymond James Trust N.A. now owns 2,126 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $717,000 after purchasing an additional 135 shares during the period. Prudential PLC purchased a new stake in Moody’s in the first quarter worth $1,078,000. Sequoia Financial Advisors LLC grew its position in shares of Moody’s by 8.7% during the 1st quarter. Sequoia Financial Advisors LLC now owns 1,980 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $668,000 after buying an additional 158 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. grew its position in shares of Moody’s by 2.3% during the 1st quarter. Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. now owns 30,994 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $10,457,000 after buying an additional 684 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 92.11% of the company’s stock.

Moody’s Company Profile

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Moody's Corporation operates as an integrated risk assessment firm worldwide. It operates in two segments, Moody's Analytics and Moody's Investors Services. The Moody's Analytics segment develops a range of products and services that support the risk management activities of institutional participants in financial markets.

Further Reading

Analyst Recommendations for Moody's (NYSE:MCO)

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