Sentry Investment Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) by 13.2% during the fourth quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The fund owned 113,596 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 13,258 shares during the quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC’s holdings in Morgan Stanley were worth $5,960,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its stake in Morgan Stanley by 18.3% during the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 11,816,768 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $569,213,000 after acquiring an additional 1,828,697 shares during the period. Epoch Investment Partners Inc. raised its stake in Morgan Stanley by 2.0% during the 3rd quarter. Epoch Investment Partners Inc. now owns 9,843,789 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $474,175,000 after acquiring an additional 189,953 shares during the period. Legal & General Group Plc raised its stake in Morgan Stanley by 1.8% during the 3rd quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 6,800,716 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $327,595,000 after acquiring an additional 116,997 shares during the period. LSV Asset Management raised its stake in Morgan Stanley by 2.9% during the 4th quarter. LSV Asset Management now owns 6,117,877 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $321,005,000 after acquiring an additional 174,300 shares during the period. Finally, Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. raised its stake in Morgan Stanley by 1.4% during the 4th quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 5,937,332 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $311,452,000 after acquiring an additional 84,528 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 86.55% of the company’s stock.

In related news, Director Alistair Darling sold 3,850 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, November 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $49.29, for a total value of $189,766.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 14,218 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $700,805.22. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Keishi Hotsuki sold 25,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $50.00, for a total transaction of $1,250,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 0.24% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Morgan Stanley (MS) opened at $53.43 on Tuesday. The stock has a market cap of $93,226.32, a P/E ratio of 14.32, a PEG ratio of 0.90 and a beta of 1.54. The company has a current ratio of 0.74, a quick ratio of 0.74 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.68. Morgan Stanley has a 1 year low of $40.06 and a 1 year high of $58.05.

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, January 18th. The financial services provider reported $0.84 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.77 by $0.07. Morgan Stanley had a net margin of 14.10% and a return on equity of 10.03%. The firm had revenue of $9.50 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $9.25 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.81 earnings per share. Morgan Stanley’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.3% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts expect that Morgan Stanley will post 4.51 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, February 15th. Investors of record on Wednesday, January 31st will be issued a $0.25 dividend. This represents a $1.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.87%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, January 30th. Morgan Stanley’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 32.36%.

A number of equities research analysts have commented on the stock. Oppenheimer restated a “hold” rating on shares of Morgan Stanley in a research note on Tuesday, October 17th. Atlantic Securities upgraded shares of Morgan Stanley from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $61.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, January 10th. Societe Generale set a $61.00 target price on shares of Morgan Stanley and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Monday, January 22nd. Buckingham Research lifted their price objective on shares of Morgan Stanley from $54.00 to $57.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 18th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “top pick” rating and set a $69.00 price objective on shares of Morgan Stanley in a research report on Wednesday, October 18th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating, sixteen have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. Morgan Stanley has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $54.07.

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Morgan Stanley Company Profile

Morgan Stanley is a financial holding company. The Company’s segments include Institutional Securities, Wealth Management and Investment Management. The Company’s Institutional Securities business segment provides investment banking, sales and trading, and other services to corporations, governments, financial institutions and high-to-ultra high net worth clients.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS)

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