Epoch Investment Partners Inc. lessened its stake in shares of Paychex, Inc. (NASDAQ:PAYX) by 5.9% during the 2nd quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The fund owned 490,066 shares of the business services provider’s stock after selling 30,503 shares during the period. Epoch Investment Partners Inc.’s holdings in Paychex were worth $33,496,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently added to or reduced their stakes in PAYX. Advisors Preferred LLC raised its holdings in Paychex by 116.4% during the second quarter. Advisors Preferred LLC now owns 1,567 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $107,000 after acquiring an additional 843 shares in the last quarter. Clarus Wealth Advisors bought a new stake in Paychex in the second quarter valued at approximately $109,000. Summit Trail Advisors LLC raised its stake in Paychex by 17,216.0% in the first quarter. Summit Trail Advisors LLC now owns 116,537 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $117,000 after buying an additional 115,864 shares during the period. Financial Gravity Wealth Inc. bought a new stake in Paychex in the first quarter valued at approximately $137,000. Finally, Rational Advisors LLC bought a new stake in Paychex in the second quarter valued at approximately $151,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 66.94% of the company’s stock.

Several analysts have issued reports on the company. Stifel Nicolaus upped their price objective on Paychex from $66.00 to $69.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 28th. BidaskClub upgraded Paychex from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Saturday. ValuEngine upgraded Paychex from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, July 2nd. Morgan Stanley upped their price objective on Paychex from $66.00 to $67.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 28th. Finally, Citigroup upped their price objective on Paychex from $64.00 to $67.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 28th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating, two have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $68.42.

NASDAQ:PAYX opened at $74.04 on Friday. The company has a market capitalization of $26.78 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.04, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.20 and a beta of 0.96. Paychex, Inc. has a 12-month low of $56.82 and a 12-month high of $74.74.

Paychex (NASDAQ:PAYX) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, June 27th. The business services provider reported $0.61 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.62 by ($0.01). The firm had revenue of $871.10 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $868.60 million. Paychex had a return on equity of 44.29% and a net margin of 27.62%. Paychex’s revenue for the quarter was up 9.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.54 EPS. equities research analysts forecast that Paychex, Inc. will post 2.84 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, August 23rd. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, August 1st were paid a dividend of $0.56 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, July 31st. This represents a $2.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.03%. Paychex’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 87.84%.

In other news, CEO Martin Mucci sold 74,742 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $69.66, for a total transaction of $5,206,527.72. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 276,754 shares in the company, valued at $19,278,683.64. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Joseph M. Tucci sold 6,250 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, July 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $68.63, for a total value of $428,937.50. Following the transaction, the director now owns 55,010 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,775,336.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders have sold 248,559 shares of company stock worth $17,599,054. 11.70% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Paychex Profile

Paychex, Inc provides payroll, human resource (HR), retirement, and insurance services for small to medium-sized businesses in the United States and Europe. The company offers payroll processing services; payroll tax administration services; employee payment services; and regulatory compliance services, such as new-hire reporting and garnishment processing.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Paychex (NASDAQ:PAYX)

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