Bahl & Gaynor Inc. Reduces Position in American Express Company (NYSE:AXP)
Bahl & Gaynor Inc. decreased its position in American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) by 43.5% during the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 4,332 shares of the payment services company’s stock after selling 3,330 shares during the period. Bahl & Gaynor Inc.’s holdings in American Express were worth $343,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of the company. Dodge & Cox bought a new stake in shares of American Express during the fourth quarter worth approximately $2,128,667,000. First Eagle Investment Management LLC increased its position in shares of American Express by 1.9% in the first quarter. First Eagle Investment Management LLC now owns 16,239,276 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $1,284,689,000 after buying an additional 305,651 shares during the last quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC increased its position in shares of American Express by 2.3% in the first quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 10,879,001 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $860,638,000 after buying an additional 248,731 shares during the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its position in shares of American Express by 9.4% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 10,274,363 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $812,804,000 after buying an additional 879,569 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Norges Bank acquired a new position in shares of American Express during the fourth quarter worth $616,804,000. 82.60% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
American Express Company (NYSE AXP) opened at 85.22 on Tuesday. The company has a market cap of $76.17 billion, a PE ratio of 15.38 and a beta of 1.18. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $79.56 and a 200 day moving average of $78.20. American Express Company has a 12-month low of $59.50 and a 12-month high of $85.88.
American Express (NYSE:AXP) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, April 19th. The payment services company reported $1.34 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.28 by $0.06. American Express had a net margin of 16.24% and a return on equity of 25.24%. The company had revenue of $7.89 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $7.76 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.45 EPS. American Express’s revenue for the quarter was down 2.5% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts expect that American Express Company will post $5.70 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, August 10th. Investors of record on Friday, July 7th will be paid a dividend of $0.32 per share. This represents a $1.28 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.50%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, July 5th. American Express’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 23.19%.
American Express announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share repurchase plan on Wednesday, June 28th that authorizes the company to repurchase $4.40 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the payment services company to purchase up to 5.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.
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A number of brokerages have recently weighed in on AXP. Nomura upgraded American Express from a “reduce” rating to a “neutral” rating and boosted their target price for the stock from $63.00 to $78.00 in a research note on Thursday, April 27th. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $93.00 target price (down previously from $97.00) on shares of American Express in a research note on Friday, April 21st. Wells Fargo & Company restated a “market perform” rating and issued a $80.00 target price on shares of American Express in a research note on Sunday, May 21st. BMO Capital Markets restated a “hold” rating and issued a $84.00 target price on shares of American Express in a research note on Thursday, June 1st. Finally, BidaskClub upgraded American Express from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 14th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have assigned a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $83.53.
In other American Express news, EVP Marc D. Gordon sold 4,900 shares of American Express stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $76.98, for a total value of $377,202.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Douglas E. Buckminster sold 46,950 shares of American Express stock in a transaction on Tuesday, April 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.78, for a total transaction of $3,792,621.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 103,676 shares in the company, valued at $8,374,947.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 54,850 shares of company stock worth $4,407,543. 0.67% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
American Express Company Profile
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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