Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) – Equities researchers at William Blair reduced their Q3 2017 earnings per share estimates for Discover Financial Services in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. William Blair analyst R. Napoli now expects that the financial services provider will earn $1.56 per share for the quarter, down from their previous forecast of $1.58. William Blair has a “Outperform” rating on the stock.

A number of other brokerages also recently weighed in on DFS. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Discover Financial Services from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Instinet restated a “buy” rating and issued a $81.00 target price (down previously from $86.00) on shares of Discover Financial Services in a research note on Wednesday, July 12th. Wells Fargo & Company downgraded Discover Financial Services to a “buy” rating and set a $70.00 target price on the stock. in a research note on Friday, May 19th. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “buy” rating and issued a $75.00 target price (down previously from $82.00) on shares of Discover Financial Services in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded Discover Financial Services from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 1st. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and fifteen have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Discover Financial Services presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $73.95.

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Discover Financial Services (DFS) opened at 58.67 on Friday. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $59.76 and its 200 day moving average price is $62.79. Discover Financial Services has a 12 month low of $53.91 and a 12 month high of $74.33. The firm has a market capitalization of $21.85 billion, a PE ratio of 10.12 and a beta of 1.45.

Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 26th. The financial services provider reported $1.40 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.45 by ($0.05). Discover Financial Services had a net margin of 20.91% and a return on equity of 21.28%. The company had revenue of $2.42 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.40 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.47 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 9.2% on a year-over-year basis.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Prudential Financial Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Discover Financial Services by 6.5% in the second quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 921,150 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $57,286,000 after purchasing an additional 56,046 shares during the period. Annex Advisory Services LLC increased its stake in Discover Financial Services by 23.9% in the second quarter. Annex Advisory Services LLC now owns 15,686 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $975,000 after acquiring an additional 3,027 shares during the last quarter. Bank of Nova Scotia increased its stake in Discover Financial Services by 171.5% in the first quarter. Bank of Nova Scotia now owns 88,397 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $6,045,000 after acquiring an additional 55,840 shares during the last quarter. Calamos Advisors LLC increased its stake in Discover Financial Services by 120.3% in the second quarter. Calamos Advisors LLC now owns 634,391 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $39,453,000 after acquiring an additional 346,406 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Pacer Advisors Inc. increased its stake in Discover Financial Services by 3.2% in the first quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 8,406 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $575,000 after acquiring an additional 264 shares during the last quarter. 86.21% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

In other news, SVP Edward W. Mcgrogan sold 1,228 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $61.06, for a total value of $74,981.68. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 13,085 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $798,970.10. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, EVP Kathryn Mcnamara Corley sold 4,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $59.63, for a total transaction of $238,520.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 150,744 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,988,864.72. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 157,002 shares of company stock worth $9,580,337. Insiders own 0.96% of the company’s stock.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 7th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, August 24th were issued a $0.35 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, August 22nd. This represents a $1.40 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.39%. This is a boost from Discover Financial Services’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.30. Discover Financial Services’s dividend payout ratio is presently 24.18%.

Discover Financial Services declared that its board has approved a share buyback plan on Wednesday, June 28th that permits the company to repurchase $2.23 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the financial services provider to reacquire up to 9.5% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

Discover Financial Services Company Profile

Discover Financial Services (DFS) is a direct banking and payment services company. The Company is a bank holding company, as well as a financial holding company. The Company operates through two segments: Direct Banking and Payment Services. It provides direct banking products and services, and payment services through its subsidiaries.

Earnings History and Estimates for Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS)

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