Marsh & McLennan Cos. (MMC) Rating Lowered to Sell at Zacks Investment Research
Marsh & McLennan Cos. (NYSE:MMC) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a note issued to investors on Monday.
According to Zacks, “Marsh & McLennan’s exposure to currency volatility due to huge international presence, and integration risks from acquisitions raises concern. However, the company should benefit from improved pricing, stable ratings, strong capital management and expense control initiatives. Its segments Risk and Insurance Services and Consulting are also performing well. The company's effective capital management via share buyback and dividend payment also remains impressive. Also its strategic acquisitions and restructuring initiatives have generated new clients will generate long term growth. Our proven model cannot conclusively say if Marsh & McLennan will beat expectation when it reports third quarter results on Oct 25. This is because Zacks Rank #4 that decreases predictive power of a beat when combined with Earnings ESP of 0.00% makes prediction difficult.”
MMC has been the topic of several other reports. Credit Suisse Group AG set a $55.00 price objective on Marsh & McLennan Cos. and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, September 12th. Barclays PLC restated an “overweight” rating and issued a $71.00 price objective on shares of Marsh & McLennan Cos. in a research report on Tuesday, June 21st. Citigroup Inc. reduced their price objective on Marsh & McLennan Cos. from $78.00 to $76.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, October 11th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods upped their price objective on Marsh & McLennan Cos. from $69.00 to $71.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, July 29th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets restated a “market perform” rating and issued a $73.00 price objective (down from $77.00) on shares of Marsh & McLennan Cos. in a research report on Tuesday, July 12th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Marsh & McLennan Cos. currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $69.18.
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Marsh & McLennan Cos. (NYSE:MMC) traded down 0.523% during trading on Monday, reaching $65.645. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 728,378 shares. Marsh & McLennan Cos. has a 1-year low of $50.81 and a 1-year high of $68.69. The company’s 50-day moving average is $66.92 and its 200-day moving average is $65.53. The company has a market capitalization of $34.02 billion, a P/E ratio of 20.973 and a beta of 0.93.
Marsh & McLennan Cos. (NYSE:MMC) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.91 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.90 by $0.01. Marsh & McLennan Cos. had a return on equity of 25.30% and a net margin of 12.54%. The business had revenue of $3.40 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.38 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $0.80 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 4.7% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts anticipate that Marsh & McLennan Cos. will post $3.38 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 15th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, October 11th will be paid a dividend of $0.34 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, October 6th. This represents a $1.36 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.06%. Marsh & McLennan Cos.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 43.45%.
In other Marsh & McLennan Cos. news, Chairman Alexander S. Moczarski sold 22,230 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $67.41, for a total transaction of $1,498,524.30. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Company insiders own 1.51% of the company’s stock.
Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of MMC. National Pension Service raised its stake in Marsh & McLennan Cos. by 8.4% in the third quarter. National Pension Service now owns 380,400 shares of the company’s stock worth $25,582,000 after buying an additional 29,417 shares during the period. Highland Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in Marsh & McLennan Cos. during the third quarter worth about $1,033,000. MSI Financial Services Inc raised its stake in Marsh & McLennan Cos. by 2,345.3% in the third quarter. MSI Financial Services Inc now owns 25,040 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,684,000 after buying an additional 24,016 shares during the period. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC raised its stake in Marsh & McLennan Cos. by 0.8% in the third quarter. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC now owns 243,054 shares of the company’s stock worth $16,345,000 after buying an additional 1,910 shares during the period. Finally, Capstone Asset Management Co. raised its stake in Marsh & McLennan Cos. by 6.1% in the third quarter. Capstone Asset Management Co. now owns 46,121 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,102,000 after buying an additional 2,660 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 85.97% of the company’s stock.
Marsh & McLennan Cos. Company Profile
Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc is a professional services firm offering clients advice and solutions in risk, strategy and people. The Company is the parent company of various specialty consultants, including Marsh, an insurance broker, intermediary and risk advisor; Guy Carpenter, a risk and reinsurance specialist; Mercer, a provider of human resource (HR) and related financial advice and services, and Oliver Wyman Group, a management, economic and brand consultancy.
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