Sanford C. Bernstein restated their buy rating on shares of Mastercard (NYSE:MA) in a research note published on Monday morning. They currently have a $180.00 price target on the credit services provider’s stock, up from their previous price target of $166.00.

MA has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Guggenheim upgraded Mastercard from a neutral rating to a buy rating and boosted their target price for the stock from $135.00 to $153.00 in a research report on Monday, September 11th. BidaskClub upgraded Mastercard from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, August 22nd. Mizuho reiterated a hold rating and issued a $140.00 price objective on shares of Mastercard in a report on Thursday, October 12th. Barclays upped their price objective on Mastercard from $142.00 to $148.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a report on Friday, September 8th. Finally, Buckingham Research started coverage on Mastercard in a report on Monday, October 2nd. They issued a buy rating and a $163.00 price objective for the company. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twenty-eight have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $159.69.

Mastercard (MA) opened at $151.93 on Monday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.83, a current ratio of 1.66 and a quick ratio of 1.66. The company has a market capitalization of $160,588.44, a price-to-earnings ratio of 35.19, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.02 and a beta of 1.20. Mastercard has a one year low of $102.98 and a one year high of $154.65.

Mastercard (NYSE:MA) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 31st. The credit services provider reported $1.34 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.23 by $0.11. The company had revenue of $3.40 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.28 billion. Mastercard had a return on equity of 78.38% and a net margin of 38.70%. The business’s revenue was up 18.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $1.08 earnings per share. sell-side analysts expect that Mastercard will post 4.54 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, February 9th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, January 9th will be given a dividend of $0.25 per share. This is a boost from Mastercard’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.22. This represents a $1.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.66%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, January 8th. Mastercard’s dividend payout ratio is currently 20.47%.

Mastercard declared that its board has authorized a stock repurchase program on Monday, December 4th that permits the company to buyback $4.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the credit services provider to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

In related news, Director Richard Haythornthwaite sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $142.51, for a total transaction of $712,550.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 45,278 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $6,452,567.78. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Craig Vosburg sold 14,200 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $141.86, for a total value of $2,014,412.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 40,646 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,766,041.56. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 25,000 shares of company stock valued at $3,582,984 over the last ninety days. 0.30% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its stake in shares of Mastercard by 5.3% during the third quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 2,967,796 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $419,053,000 after purchasing an additional 149,511 shares during the period. Shelton Capital Management increased its stake in shares of Mastercard by 163.1% during the third quarter. Shelton Capital Management now owns 40,325 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $5,694,000 after purchasing an additional 25,000 shares during the period. Steward Partners Investment Advisory LLC bought a new position in shares of Mastercard during the third quarter worth approximately $1,024,000. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio increased its stake in shares of Mastercard by 30.4% during the third quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 846,002 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $119,455,000 after purchasing an additional 197,182 shares during the period. Finally, Coastline Trust Co increased its stake in shares of Mastercard by 9.0% during the third quarter. Coastline Trust Co now owns 11,965 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $1,690,000 after purchasing an additional 990 shares during the period. 75.81% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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Mastercard Company Profile

MasterCard Incorporated is a technology company that connects consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses across the world, enabling them to use electronic forms of payment. The Company operates through Payment Solutions segment. The Company allows user to make payments by creating a range of payment solutions and services using its brands, which include MasterCard, Maestro and Cirrus.

Analyst Recommendations for Mastercard (NYSE:MA)

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