Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company (NASDAQ:WLTW) shares hit a new 52-week high during trading on Thursday . The company traded as high as $160.42 and last traded at $160.45, with a volume of 140,598 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $159.80.

WLTW has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $166.00 price target on shares of Willis Towers Watson Public Limited in a report on Friday, July 21st. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $158.00 price target on shares of Willis Towers Watson Public Limited in a report on Friday, July 14th. Citigroup Inc. upped their price target on Willis Towers Watson Public Limited from $166.00 to $174.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, July 13th. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $176.00 price target on shares of Willis Towers Watson Public Limited in a report on Tuesday, September 5th. Finally, ValuEngine upgraded Willis Towers Watson Public Limited from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, September 8th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating, fourteen have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $158.07.

The stock has a market capitalization of $21.53 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 45.38 and a beta of 0.95. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $153.42 and its 200 day moving average price is $145.71.

Willis Towers Watson Public Limited (NASDAQ:WLTW) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 3rd. The financial services provider reported $1.45 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.48 by ($0.03). The company had revenue of $1.95 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.95 billion. Willis Towers Watson Public Limited had a net margin of 4.75% and a return on equity of 10.63%. Willis Towers Watson Public Limited’s revenue was up .2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.66 earnings per share. Equities research analysts predict that Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company will post $8.43 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 16th. Shareholders of record on Saturday, September 30th were issued a $0.53 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, September 28th. This represents a $2.12 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.33%. Willis Towers Watson Public Limited’s dividend payout ratio is presently 76.81%.

In other Willis Towers Watson Public Limited news, Director Jeffrey W. Ubben sold 85,000 shares of Willis Towers Watson Public Limited stock in a transaction on Monday, August 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $149.78, for a total value of $12,731,300.00. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, CFO Roger F. Millay sold 20,000 shares of Willis Towers Watson Public Limited stock in a transaction on Tuesday, August 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $149.58, for a total value of $2,991,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 14,059 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,102,945.22. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 4,845,295 shares of company stock valued at $728,949,063 over the last ninety days. Insiders own 6.70% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Financial Architects Inc raised its holdings in Willis Towers Watson Public Limited by 2.5% in the 2nd quarter. Financial Architects Inc now owns 1,284 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $187,000 after acquiring an additional 31 shares in the last quarter. Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management LLC raised its holdings in Willis Towers Watson Public Limited by 0.8% in the 2nd quarter. Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management LLC now owns 6,852 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $997,000 after acquiring an additional 56 shares in the last quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can raised its holdings in Willis Towers Watson Public Limited by 11.8% in the 2nd quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 693 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $100,000 after acquiring an additional 73 shares in the last quarter. Commonwealth Bank of Australia raised its holdings in Willis Towers Watson Public Limited by 12.1% in the 2nd quarter. Commonwealth Bank of Australia now owns 694 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $100,000 after acquiring an additional 75 shares in the last quarter. Finally, LS Investment Advisors LLC raised its holdings in Willis Towers Watson Public Limited by 1.2% in the 2nd quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 6,432 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $936,000 after acquiring an additional 79 shares in the last quarter. 94.26% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company Profile

Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company (Willis Towers Watson) is a holding company. The Company operates as a global advisory, broking and solutions company. It is engaged in offering risk management, insurance broking, consulting, technology and solutions, and private exchanges. The Company operates through eight segments: Willis International; Willis North America; Willis Capital, Wholesale & Reinsurance (CWR); Willis GB; Towers Watson Benefits; Towers Watson Exchange Solutions; Towers Watson Risk and Financial Services; and Towers Watson Talent and Rewards.

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