Goldman Sachs Group Inc. upgraded shares of Global Payments Inc. (NYSE:GPN) from a neutral rating to a buy rating in a research report report published on Thursday. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. currently has $88.00 price objective on the stock, up from their prior price objective of $80.00.

A number of other research analysts have also commented on GPN. Jefferies Group restated a hold rating and set a $75.00 price target (up from $68.00) on shares of Global Payments in a research report on Tuesday, May 24th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Global Payments from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $86.00 price target for the company in a research report on Tuesday, May 24th. Nomura reduced their price target on shares of Global Payments from $65.00 to $64.00 and set a reduce rating for the company in a research report on Friday, June 3rd. Credit Suisse Group AG restated a buy rating on shares of Global Payments in a research report on Monday, June 27th. Finally, Barclays PLC reduced their price target on shares of Global Payments from $78.00 to $73.00 and set an equal weight rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, July 7th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and seventeen have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $76.87.

Global Payments (NYSE:GPN) opened at 74.44 on Thursday. Global Payments has a 12 month low of $51.29 and a 12 month high of $79.93. The company has a market capitalization of $11.44 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 36.49 and a beta of 1.16. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $74.90 and its 200 day moving average price is $72.53.

Global Payments (NYSE:GPN) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.73 EPS for the quarter, meeting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.73. The firm earned $747.10 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $568.81 million. Global Payments had a net margin of 9.37% and a return on equity of 27.99%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.22 EPS. Analysts forecast that Global Payments will post $3.47 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, August 26th. Stockholders of record on Friday, August 12th were given a dividend of $0.01 per share. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, August 10th. This represents a $0.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.05%. Global Payments’s payout ratio is 1.95%.

In other news, Director William I. Jacobs sold 600 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $75.80, for a total transaction of $45,480.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 44,716 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,389,472.80. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Robert H. B. Baldwin, Jr. sold 6,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 18th. The shares were 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 in the company, valued at $27,737,646.43. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.10% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in GPN. FMR LLC increased its stake in shares of Global Payments by 7.2% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 15,448,116 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,102,686,000 after buying an additional 1,033,050 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of Global Payments by 44.3% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 13,969,774 shares of the company’s stock valued at $997,163,000 after buying an additional 4,289,181 shares during the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP increased its stake in shares of Global Payments by 227.4% in the first quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 11,997,800 shares of the company’s stock valued at $783,456,000 after buying an additional 8,333,396 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp increased its stake in shares of Global Payments by 35.8% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 5,512,377 shares of the company’s stock valued at $393,482,000 after buying an additional 1,454,637 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA increased its stake in shares of Global Payments by 30.7% in the second quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 5,367,430 shares of the company’s stock valued at $383,127,000 after buying an additional 1,259,406 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 96.74% of the company’s stock.

About Global Payments

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.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:GPN

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