Credit Suisse Group Reiterates “Underperform” Rating for American Express Company (AXP)
American Express Company (NYSE:AXP)‘s stock had its “underperform” rating restated by analysts at Credit Suisse Group in a research note issued on Thursday. They currently have a $84.00 target price on the payment services company’s stock, up from their prior target price of $79.00. Credit Suisse Group’s price target suggests a potential downside of 8.78% from the stock’s previous close.
Several other brokerages have also commented on AXP. Morgan Stanley cut their price target on shares of American Express from $90.00 to $89.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, September 8th. Bank of America Corporation reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $102.00 price target on shares of American Express in a research note on Monday, October 9th. BidaskClub lowered shares of American Express from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 25th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of American Express from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 30th. Finally, Buckingham Research initiated coverage on shares of American Express in a research note on Monday, October 2nd. They set a “neutral” rating and a $92.00 price target on the stock. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have given a hold rating and thirteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. American Express currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $90.66.
Shares of American Express (AXP) traded up 0.21% during trading on Thursday, reaching $92.09. 4,442,193 shares of the company were exchanged. American Express has a 1-year low of $65.03 and a 1-year high of $93.35. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $89.20 and a 200-day moving average price of $83.54. The stock has a market capitalization of $81.41 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.68 and a beta of 1.21.
American Express (NYSE:AXP) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 18th. The payment services company reported $1.50 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.47 by $0.03. American Express had a net margin of 14.48% and a return on equity of 22.75%. The business had revenue of $8.44 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $8.31 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $1.24 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 8.5% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts predict that American Express will post $5.84 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
American Express announced that its board has initiated a stock repurchase program on Wednesday, June 28th that allows the company to buyback $4.40 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the payment services company to purchase up to 5.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are typically an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
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In other American Express news, Vice Chairman Stephen J. Squeri sold 94,792 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, July 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.41, for a total transaction of $8,096,184.72. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 261,665 shares in the company, valued at $22,348,807.65. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, CEO Kenneth I. Chenault sold 789,503 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, July 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $84.62, for a total transaction of $66,807,743.86. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 889,836 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $75,297,922.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 953,636 shares of company stock valued at $80,863,777. 0.67% of the stock is owned by insiders.
Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in shares of American Express by 2,686.0% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 44,177,867 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $3,494,913,000 after purchasing an additional 42,592,136 shares during the period. Wellington Management Group LLP boosted its stake in shares of American Express by 21.7% in the first quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 17,198,787 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $1,360,596,000 after purchasing an additional 3,071,573 shares during the period. Tesco Pension Investment Ltd purchased a new position in shares of American Express in the first quarter valued at $137,325,000. Veritas Asset Management LLP boosted its stake in shares of American Express by 15.2% in the second quarter. Veritas Asset Management LLP now owns 10,303,201 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $867,942,000 after purchasing an additional 1,358,474 shares during the period. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC purchased a new position in shares of American Express in the second quarter valued at $101,526,000. Institutional investors own 82.77% of the company’s stock.
About American Express
American Express Company, together with its subsidiaries, is a global services company. The Company’s principal products and services are charge and credit card products, and travel-related services, which are offered to consumers and businesses around the world. Its segments include the U.S. Consumer Services (USCS), International Consumer and Network Services (ICNS), Global Commercial Services (GCS) and Global Merchant Services (GMS).
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