Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of MarketAxess Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:MKTX) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report published on Thursday morning. Zacks Investment Research currently has $190.00 price target on the stock.

According to Zacks, “MarketAxess Holdings is poised to grow over the long term from a consistent increase in trading volumes, launch of new products and increasing client base. The acquisition of Xtracker, other alliances, continued growth in Europe should also support top-line growth. Further, MarketAxess enjoys strong liquidity and a steady capital position, which enables it to buy back shares and increase dividend from time to time. In addition, the Zacks Consensus earnings estimates for 2016 has been revised up by 3.5% to $3.24 over the past 60 days. The same for 2017 is also up 3.7% to $3.90 over the same time frame. However, its expense management continues to raise concerns. Increase in employee compensation and benefits, along with other operating expenses, has drained the company's bottom line. Intense competition due to increased market consolidation and new entrants has reduced the company's market share.”

Analyst Recommendations for MarketAxess Holdings (NASDAQ:MKTX)

Several other analysts have also weighed in on MKTX. William Blair initiated coverage on MarketAxess Holdings in a report on Monday, June 20th. They set a market perform rating on the stock. Credit Suisse Group AG reissued a sell rating on shares of MarketAxess Holdings in a report on Tuesday, June 28th. Citigroup Inc. lowered MarketAxess Holdings to a market perform rating in a report on Friday, July 15th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Raymond James Financial Inc. lowered MarketAxess Holdings from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a report on Friday, July 15th. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods lifted their price objective on MarketAxess Holdings from $165.00 to $175.00 and gave the stock an outperform rating in a report on Friday, July 29th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $140.75.

MarketAxess Holdings (NASDAQ:MKTX) opened at 172.83 on Thursday. The firm has a market capitalization of $6.50 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 59.60 and a beta of 0.76. MarketAxess Holdings has a one year low of $86.19 and a one year high of $178.21. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $166.79 and its 200-day moving average price is $143.18.

MarketAxess Holdings (NASDAQ:MKTX) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.88 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.85 by $0.03. MarketAxess Holdings had a return on equity of 27.14% and a net margin of 32.52%. The company had revenue of $96.60 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $93.98 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.64 EPS. MarketAxess Holdings’s revenue for the quarter was up 27.9% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that MarketAxess Holdings will post $3.23 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, August 25th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, August 11th were paid a $0.26 dividend. This represents a $1.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.60%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, August 9th. MarketAxess Holdings’s dividend payout ratio is currently 35.86%.

In other MarketAxess Holdings news, CFO Antonio L. Delise sold 10,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $166.79, for a total value of $1,667,900.00. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 59,494 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $9,923,004.26. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Nicholas Themelis sold 6,200 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, August 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $165.40, for a total value of $1,025,480.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 70,799 shares in the company, valued at approximately $11,710,154.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 4.51% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. State Street Corp raised its position in MarketAxess Holdings by 2.8% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 1,232,111 shares of the company’s stock worth $153,799,000 after buying an additional 33,815 shares in the last quarter. Miles Capital Inc. acquired a new position in MarketAxess Holdings during the first quarter worth approximately $257,000. Credit Agricole S A acquired a new position in MarketAxess Holdings during the first quarter worth approximately $8,489,000. Columbia Partners L L C Investment Management raised its position in MarketAxess Holdings by 10.0% in the first quarter. Columbia Partners L L C Investment Management now owns 14,702 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,835,000 after buying an additional 1,331 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. raised its position in MarketAxess Holdings by 0.3% in the first quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 1,089,927 shares of the company’s stock worth $136,056,000 after buying an additional 3,269 shares in the last quarter. 92.37% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

MarketAxess Holdings Company Profile

MarketAxess Holdings Inc (MarketAxess) is an electronic trading platform. The Company operates as an electronic multi-party platform for the trading of fixed-income securities and provides related data, analytics, compliance tools and post-trade services. The Company’s multi-dealer trading platform allows its institutional investor clients to request bids or offers from its broker-dealer clients and execute trades with the broker-dealer of their choice from among those that choose to respond.

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