American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) was upgraded by stock analysts at BidaskClub from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Tuesday.

Several other research firms have also issued reports on AXP. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $85.00 target price on shares of American Express in a report on Saturday, July 22nd. Sanford C. Bernstein reissued an “outperform” rating and issued a $100.00 target price (up from $99.00) on shares of American Express in a report on Saturday, July 22nd. Guggenheim raised shares of American Express from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their target price for the stock from $81.05 to $90.00 in a report on Tuesday, April 25th. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “sell” rating on shares of American Express in a report on Wednesday, July 19th. Finally, Nomura raised shares of American Express from a “reduce” rating to a “neutral” rating and increased their target price for the stock from $63.00 to $78.00 in a report on Thursday, April 27th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have given a hold rating and thirteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $84.77.

Shares of American Express (AXP) traded up 0.31% during trading on Tuesday, reaching $86.12. 1,257,369 shares of the company traded hands. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $83.91 and its 200-day moving average is $79.79. American Express has a 12-month low of $59.50 and a 12-month high of $86.67. The stock has a market capitalization of $76.13 billion, a PE ratio of 17.66 and a beta of 1.18.

American Express (NYSE:AXP) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, July 19th. The payment services company reported $1.47 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.44 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $8.31 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $8.20 billion. American Express had a net margin of 14.11% and a return on equity of 21.90%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up .9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $2.10 EPS. On average, equities analysts predict that American Express will post $5.74 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

American Express announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share repurchase program on Wednesday, June 28th that authorizes the company to repurchase $4.40 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the payment services company to repurchase up to 5.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

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In related news, insider Anre D. Williams sold 53,111 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $85.24, for a total value of $4,527,181.64. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 79,614 shares in the company, valued at $6,786,297.36. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Vice Chairman Stephen J. Squeri sold 94,792 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, July 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $85.41, for a total value of $8,096,184.72. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 261,665 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $22,348,807.65. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 948,287 shares of company stock valued at $80,321,961. 0.67% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. BlackRock Inc. increased 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 worth $3,494,913,000 after buying an additional 42,592,136 shares in the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP increased its stake in 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 buying an additional 3,071,573 shares during the period. Tesco Pension Investment Ltd acquired a new stake in American Express during the first quarter valued at $137,325,000. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board increased its stake in American Express by 944,765.8% in the second quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 1,077,147 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $90,739,000 after buying an additional 1,077,033 shares during the period. Finally, OppenheimerFunds Inc. increased its stake in American Express by 40.1% in the first quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 3,627,184 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $286,946,000 after buying an additional 1,038,328 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 83.81% of the company’s stock.

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).

Analyst Recommendations for American Express (NYSE:AXP)

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