Morgan Stanley Increases Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) Price Target to $139.00

Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) had its price target upped by research analysts at Morgan Stanley from $137.00 to $139.00 in a note issued to investors on Thursday, Analyst Price Targets reports. The brokerage presently has an “equal weight” rating on the financial services provider’s stock. Morgan Stanley’s price objective suggests a potential upside of 12.42% from the stock’s current price.

A number of other brokerages have also weighed in on DFS. Seaport Global Securities began coverage on Discover Financial Services in a research report on Monday, August 30th. They issued a “neutral” rating on the stock. Citigroup reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $154.00 target price (up from $150.00) on shares of Discover Financial Services in a research report on Friday, July 23rd. Wells Fargo & Company boosted their price target on shares of Discover Financial Services from $111.00 to $125.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Monday, July 12th. Credit Suisse Group raised their target price on Discover Financial Services from $128.00 to $140.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 2nd. Finally, Barclays lifted their price target on shares of Discover Financial Services from $132.00 to $146.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Friday, July 9th. Ten investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $123.53.

DFS opened at $123.64 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.60, a current ratio of 1.24 and a quick ratio of 1.24. Discover Financial Services has a 1 year low of $51.74 and a 1 year high of $135.69. The stock’s 50 day simple moving average is $125.93 and its 200 day simple moving average is $115.28. The firm has a market cap of $37.03 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 7.91, a PEG ratio of 0.13 and a beta of 1.84.

Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, July 20th. The financial services provider reported $5.55 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $3.68 by $1.87. The firm had revenue of $3.58 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.01 billion. Discover Financial Services had a net margin of 36.50% and a return on equity of 46.03%. The business’s revenue was up 34.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business earned ($1.20) earnings per share. As a group, sell-side analysts anticipate that Discover Financial Services will post 16.9 EPS for the current year.

Discover Financial Services declared that its board has authorized a stock repurchase plan on Wednesday, July 21st that permits the company to buyback $2.40 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the financial services provider to purchase up to 6.4% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are generally a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

In other Discover Financial Services news, EVP Wanjiku Juanita Walcott sold 15,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $127.00, for a total value of $1,905,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 60,977 shares in the company, valued at $7,744,079. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, CAO Shifra Kolsky sold 800 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $127.11, for a total value of $101,688.00. Following the transaction, the chief accounting officer now owns 3,610 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $458,867.10. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 19,624 shares of company stock worth $2,477,843. Company insiders own 0.54% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Discover Financial Services by 1.8% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 36,208,440 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $4,283,097,000 after buying an additional 632,214 shares in the last quarter. Capital International Investors raised its holdings in Discover Financial Services by 22.7% during the second quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 20,614,044 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $2,438,214,000 after acquiring an additional 3,816,544 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. lifted its position in shares of Discover Financial Services by 1.0% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 20,523,011 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $2,427,667,000 after acquiring an additional 195,725 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC boosted its stake in shares of Discover Financial Services by 1.1% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 17,027,617 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $2,014,197,000 after acquiring an additional 184,810 shares during the period. Finally, Macquarie Group Ltd. grew its position in shares of Discover Financial Services by 2.7% during the second quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 7,318,546 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $865,711,000 after purchasing an additional 195,693 shares in the last quarter. 85.28% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Discover Financial Services Company Profile

Discover Financial Services is a holding company, which engages in the provision of direct banking and payment services. It operates through the Direct Banking and Payment Services segments. The Direct Banking segment offers Discover-branded credit cards issued to individuals on the Discover Network and other consumer products and services, including private student loans, personal loans, home loans, and other consumer lending and deposit products.

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Analyst Recommendations for Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS)

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