Shares of Global Payments Inc. (NYSE:GPN) reached a new 52-week high on Tuesday . The stock traded as high as $79.09 and last traded at $79.03, with a volume of 495,649 shares. The stock had previously closed at $78.32.

Several research firms have recently weighed in on GPN. Piper Jaffray Cos. reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and set a $76.00 price objective (up previously from $73.00) on shares of Global Payments in a report on Thursday, April 7th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Global Payments from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Monday, April 11th. Morgan Stanley reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Global Payments in a report on Thursday, April 7th. Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $68.00 price objective on shares of Global Payments in a report on Thursday, March 31st. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Global Payments in a report on Wednesday, April 27th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating and fifteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $74.95.

The company’s 50 day moving average is $74.48 and its 200-day moving average is $67.83. The company has a market cap of $10.23 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 34.58.

In related news, Director William I. Jacobs sold 1,200 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, May 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $72.87, for a total transaction of $87,444.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 45,916 shares in the company, valued at $3,345,898.92. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director Robert H. B. Baldwin, Jr. sold 6,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, July 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $76.61, for a total transaction of $497,965.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 362,063 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $27,737,646.43. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Other hedge funds recently bought and sold shares of the company. Advantus Capital Management Inc increased its stake in Global Payments by 87.8% in the fourth quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc now owns 17,026 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,098,000 after buying an additional 7,962 shares during the period. Utah Retirement Systems increased its stake in Global Payments by 98.3% in the fourth quarter. Utah Retirement Systems now owns 23,776 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,534,000 after buying an additional 11,788 shares during the period. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management CO. LTD. bought a new stake in Global Payments during the fourth quarter worth about $1,046,000. US Bancorp DE increased its stake in Global Payments by 111.2% in the fourth quarter. US Bancorp DE now owns 32,802 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,116,000 after buying an additional 17,271 shares during the period. Finally, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS increased its stake in Global Payments by 100.3% in the fourth quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 37,657 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,429,000 after buying an additional 18,858 shares during the period.

Global Payments Inc is a provider of payment technology services. The Company provides payment and digital commerce solutions. The Company operates in two segments: North America merchant services and International merchant services. The Company’s North America merchant services and International merchant services segments primarily provide payment solutions for credit cards, debit cards, electronic payments and check-related services.

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