Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA)’s stock price hit a new 52-week high during mid-day trading on Tuesday after Nomura raised their price target on the stock from $324.00 to $354.00. Nomura currently has a buy rating on the stock. Mastercard traded as high as $316.70 and last traded at $314.12, with a volume of 534407 shares. The stock had previously closed at $315.21.

A number of other brokerages have also recently issued reports on MA. ValuEngine cut Mastercard from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 2nd. Guggenheim set a $305.00 target price on Mastercard and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, November 1st. Compass Point began coverage on Mastercard in a report on Thursday, December 5th. They set a “buy” rating and a $330.00 target price for the company. Moffett Nathanson boosted their target price on Mastercard from to and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, January 7th. Finally, SunTrust Banks boosted their target price on Mastercard from $325.00 to $340.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 11th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty-four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $313.73.

In other Mastercard news, major shareholder Foundation Mastercard sold 7,542 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $271.96, for a total value of $2,051,122.32. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 111,992,604 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $30,457,508,583.84. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Michael Miebach sold 4,205 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, January 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $315.00, for a total value of $1,324,575.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 16,983 shares in the company, valued at $5,349,645. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 129,108 shares of company stock valued at $36,637,812. 3.70% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Mastercard by 0.5% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 71,012,814 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $18,785,021,000 after purchasing an additional 367,442 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in shares of Mastercard by 0.5% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 63,796,913 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $16,876,196,000 after purchasing an additional 297,230 shares in the last quarter. Morgan Stanley raised its position in shares of Mastercard by 4.8% in the 2nd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 13,929,653 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $3,684,811,000 after purchasing an additional 640,063 shares in the last quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC raised its position in shares of Mastercard by 2,608.7% in the 2nd quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 9,177,186 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $2,427,641,000 after purchasing an additional 8,838,385 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA raised its position in shares of Mastercard by 1.0% in the 3rd quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 8,818,653 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $2,394,882,000 after purchasing an additional 84,794 shares in the last quarter. 73.84% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

The company has a current ratio of 1.39, a quick ratio of 1.39 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.55. The firm has a market capitalization of $313.93 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 48.24, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.16 and a beta of 1.03. The company has a 50-day moving average of $296.91 and a 200-day moving average of $280.46.

Mastercard (NYSE:MA) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 29th. The credit services provider reported $2.15 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.01 by $0.14. The business had revenue of $4.47 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.41 billion. Mastercard had a return on equity of 146.92% and a net margin of 42.50%. The business’s revenue was up 14.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $1.78 EPS. On average, research analysts forecast that Mastercard Inc will post 7.69 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, February 7th. Investors of record on Thursday, January 9th will be given a dividend of $0.40 per share. This is a positive change from Mastercard’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.33. This represents a $1.60 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.51%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, January 8th. Mastercard’s dividend payout ratio is currently 24.65%.

Mastercard announced that its board has initiated a stock buyback plan on Tuesday, December 3rd that permits the company to buyback $8.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the credit services provider to purchase up to 2.7% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

Mastercard Company Profile (NYSE:MA)

Mastercard Incorporated, a technology company, provides transaction processing and other payment-related products and services in the United States and internationally. It facilitates the processing of payment transactions, including authorization, clearing, and settlement, as well as delivers related products and services.

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