Aviva PLC Reduces Position in American Express Company (AXP)
Aviva PLC decreased its holdings in American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) by 4.0% during the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 484,198 shares of the payment services company’s stock after selling 20,017 shares during the quarter. Aviva PLC owned 0.05% of American Express worth $40,794,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Several other institutional investors and hedge funds have also bought and sold shares of the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its holdings in American Express by 1.5% during the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 49,502,529 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $3,916,145,000 after purchasing an additional 722,235 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its holdings in American Express by 2,686.0% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 44,177,867 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $3,494,913,000 after purchasing an additional 42,592,136 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp lifted its holdings in American Express by 1.8% during the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 40,399,620 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $3,196,011,000 after purchasing an additional 731,315 shares in the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP lifted its holdings in American Express by 21.7% during 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 purchasing an additional 3,071,573 shares in the last quarter. Finally, First Eagle Investment Management LLC lifted its holdings in American Express by 0.6% during the second quarter. First Eagle Investment Management LLC now owns 16,342,822 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $1,376,719,000 after purchasing an additional 103,546 shares in the last quarter. 82.77% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Shares of American Express Company (AXP) opened at 91.69 on Wednesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $81.05 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.80 and a beta of 1.21. American Express Company has a 1-year low of $59.78 and a 1-year high of $92.92. The company has a 50-day moving average of $88.38 and a 200-day moving average of $83.14.
American Express (NYSE:AXP) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, July 19th. The payment services company reported $1.47 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.44 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $8.31 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $8.20 billion. American Express had a return on equity of 21.90% and a net margin of 14.11%. American Express’s revenue was up .9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $2.10 EPS. On average, equities research analysts expect that American Express Company will post $5.74 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, November 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, October 6th will be given a $0.35 dividend. This is an increase from American Express’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.32. This represents a $1.40 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.53%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, October 5th. American Express’s payout ratio is currently 28.63%.
American Express declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock repurchase plan on Wednesday, June 28th that authorizes the company to repurchase $4.40 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the payment services company to buy up to 5.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are often a sign that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.
In other news, CEO Kenneth I. Chenault sold 789,503 shares of American Express stock in a transaction dated Monday, July 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $84.62, for a total value of $66,807,743.86. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 889,836 shares in the company, valued at approximately $75,297,922.32. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, insider James Peter Bush sold 10,230 shares of American Express stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $90.55, for a total value of $926,326.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders sold 959,617 shares of company stock valued at $81,377,425. 0.67% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
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Several equities analysts have weighed in on the stock. Compass Point downgraded shares of American Express from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday, October 12th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Wells Fargo & Company initiated coverage on shares of American Express in a report on Tuesday, October 10th. They set an “outperform” rating and a $105.00 price target on the stock. Bank of America Corporation reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $102.00 target price on shares of American Express in a report on Monday, October 9th. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “sell” rating and issued a $79.00 target price on shares of American Express in a report on Wednesday, October 4th. Finally, Buckingham Research initiated coverage on shares of American Express in a report on Monday, October 2nd. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $92.00 target price on the stock. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $87.69.
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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