Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Moody’s have significantly outperformed the industry year to date. The company’s second-quarter 2017 earnings easily surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Results reflected strong revenue growth, partially offset by a rise in expenses. The company remains well positioned to improve profitability on the back of its dominant position in the credit rating industry, diverse revenue base and disintermediation of credit markets. Also, the company's inorganic growth strategy and resultant synergies should further support top-line growth going forward. However, stricter regulatory landscapes and stiff competition across the credit rating industry continue to be major near term concerns. Further, mounting expenses are expected to hurt the company’s bottom-line growth.”

Other equities analysts have also issued research reports about the company. BidaskClub lowered Moody’s Corporation from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 22nd. Barclays PLC lifted their price objective on Moody’s Corporation from $118.00 to $128.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 28th. Morgan Stanley reiterated an “equal weight” rating and set a $131.00 price objective (up previously from $122.00) on shares of Moody’s Corporation in a research note on Tuesday, July 25th. Cantor Fitzgerald reiterated 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 reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $124.00 price objective on shares of Moody’s Corporation in a research note on Wednesday, April 26th. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, one has issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $127.13.

Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) traded down 0.06% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, reaching $132.12. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 244,319 shares. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $127.17 and a 200-day moving average price of $117.42. Moody’s Corporation has a one year low of $93.51 and a one year high of $135.20. The company has a market capitalization of $25.24 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 53.08 and a beta of 1.29.

Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 21st. The business services provider reported $1.51 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.33 by $0.18. The business had revenue of $1 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $968.78 million. Moody’s Corporation had a negative return on equity of 167.31% and a net margin of 12.63%. The company’s revenue was up 7.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $1.30 EPS. Equities research analysts forecast that Moody’s Corporation will post $5.52 EPS for the current year.

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In related news, Director Darrell Duffie sold 500 shares of Moody’s Corporation stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $121.64, for a total value of $60,820.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 22,268 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,708,679.52. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, SVP Blair Worrall sold 11,384 shares of Moody’s Corporation stock in a transaction dated Friday, May 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $114.76, for a total value of $1,306,427.84. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 19,359 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,221,638.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 196,161 shares of company stock valued at $23,948,699. 1.17% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. First Manhattan Co. raised its position in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 2.6% in the first quarter. First Manhattan Co. now owns 243,401 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $26,355,000 after buying an additional 6,145 shares in the last quarter. Mn Services Vermogensbeheer B.V. raised its position in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 2.7% in the first quarter. Mn Services Vermogensbeheer B.V. now owns 4,589 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $481,000 after buying an additional 122 shares in the last quarter. Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. raised its position in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 38.4% in the first quarter. Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. now owns 18,250 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $2,045,000 after buying an additional 5,066 shares in the last quarter. Naples Global Advisors LLC acquired a new position in shares of Moody’s Corporation during the first quarter valued at $229,000. Finally, Retirement Systems of Alabama raised its position in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 1.8% in the first quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 80,238 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $8,990,000 after buying an additional 1,395 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 88.46% of the company’s stock.

Moody’s Corporation Company Profile

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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