Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Moody’s have underperformed the Zacks categorized Miscellaneous Financial Services industry, in the last one year. While we are optimistic about the company’s prospects given its diverse operations, strong balance sheet position and dominant position in the credit rating industry, the uncertain macro environment is expected to adversely impact the volume of debt securities issued in globally and the demand for credit ratings. Also, stricter regulatory landscapes, mounting expenses, stiff competition across the credit rating industry and litigations issues remain other major near-term concerns.”

Several other brokerages also recently commented on MCO. BidaskClub raised shares of Moody’s Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Friday, June 30th. Barclays PLC increased their target price on Moody’s Corporation from $118.00 to $128.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 28th. Morgan Stanley increased their target price on Moody’s Corporation from $117.00 to $118.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a report on Friday, April 28th. Cantor Fitzgerald restated a “hold” rating and set a $116.00 price objective on shares of Moody’s Corporation in a research note on Monday, May 8th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets restated a “hold” rating and set a $124.00 price objective on shares of Moody’s Corporation in a research note on Wednesday, April 26th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating, one has assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $119.00.

Moody’s Corporation (MCO) traded down 0.69% on Tuesday, reaching $122.18. 291,297 shares of the company traded hands. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $117.94 and a 200-day moving average of $110.49. The stock has a market capitalization of $23.37 billion, a PE ratio of 55.59 and a beta of 1.29. Moody’s Corporation has a one year low of $93.51 and a one year high of $124.40.

Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) last released its earnings results on Friday, May 5th. The business services provider reported $1.47 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.24 by $0.23. The business had revenue of $975.20 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $914.27 million. Moody’s Corporation had a net margin of 11.37% and a negative return on equity of 167.79%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 19.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.93 EPS. On average, analysts anticipate that Moody’s Corporation will post $5.33 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, June 12th. Investors of record on Monday, May 22nd were given a $0.38 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, May 18th. This represents a $1.52 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.24%. Moody’s Corporation’s payout ratio is 70.05%.

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In other Moody’s Corporation news, VP Linda Huber sold 13,698 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, June 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $119.50, for a total value of $1,636,911.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 77,836 shares in the company, valued at $9,301,402. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Raymond W. Mcdaniel sold 61,666 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $123.23, for a total value of $7,599,101.18. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 308,760 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $38,048,494.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 212,612 shares of company stock valued at $25,104,433 in the last 90 days. 1.17% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of MCO. Capstone Asset Management Co. boosted its position in Moody’s Corporation by 1.2% in the second quarter. Capstone Asset Management Co. now owns 14,074 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $1,713,000 after buying an additional 172 shares during the period. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB boosted its stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 0.9% in the second quarter. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB now owns 34,546 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $4,204,000 after buying an additional 323 shares during the last quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 80.6% in the first quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 221,871 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $24,858,000 after buying an additional 99,017 shares during the last quarter. Sowell Financial Services LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation during the first quarter valued at $410,000. Finally, Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC boosted its stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 1.8% in the first quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC now owns 40,801 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $4,571,000 after buying an additional 720 shares during the last quarter. 88.64% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Moody’s Corporation

Moody’s Corporation (Moody’s) is a provider of credit ratings; credit, capital markets and economic related research, data and analytical tools; software solutions and related risk management services, quantitative credit risk measures, financial services training and certification services, and research and analytical services to financial institution customers.

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Analyst Recommendations for Moody`s Corporation (NYSE:MCO)

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