Daiwa Securities Group Inc. Lowers Position in Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS)

Daiwa Securities Group Inc. cut its stake in shares of Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) by 15.2% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 35,020 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after selling 6,290 shares during the period. Daiwa Securities Group Inc.’s holdings in Discover Financial Services were worth $2,178,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Lourd Capital LLC boosted its position in Discover Financial Services by 11.6% in the second quarter. Lourd Capital LLC now owns 3,578 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $223,000 after buying an additional 373 shares in the last quarter. Coronation Fund Managers Ltd. purchased a new position in Discover Financial Services during the second quarter valued at $7,264,000. Rothschild Asset Management Inc. boosted its position in Discover Financial Services by 1.3% in the second quarter. Rothschild Asset Management Inc. now owns 616,129 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $38,317,000 after buying an additional 7,885 shares in the last quarter. Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. purchased a new position in Discover Financial Services during the second quarter valued at $657,000. Finally, Janney Montgomery Scott LLC boosted its position in Discover Financial Services by 9.4% in the second quarter. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC now owns 27,978 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,740,000 after buying an additional 2,395 shares in the last quarter. 86.20% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) traded down 0.78% on Friday, reaching $59.43. The company had a trading volume of 2,044,334 shares. The stock has a market capitalization of $22.13 billion, a P/E ratio of 10.25 and a beta of 1.46. Discover Financial Services has a 12-month low of $53.91 and a 12-month high of $74.33. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $61.23 and its 200-day moving average price is $64.20.

Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 26th. The financial services provider reported $1.40 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.45 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $2.42 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.40 billion. Discover Financial Services had a net margin of 20.91% and a return on equity of 21.28%. The business’s revenue was up 9.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $1.47 EPS. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Discover Financial Services will post $5.93 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 7th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, August 24th will be given a dividend of $0.35 per share. This represents a $1.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.36%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, August 22nd. This is an increase from Discover Financial Services’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.30. Discover Financial Services’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 20.73%.

Discover Financial Services declared that its Board of Directors has authorized a share buyback plan on Wednesday, June 28th that permits the company to buyback $2.23 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the financial services provider to repurchase up to 9.5% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

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Several equities analysts recently weighed in on the stock. BidaskClub cut shares of Discover Financial Services from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 1st. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Discover Financial Services from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $75.00 target price (down from $82.00) on shares of Discover Financial Services in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Bank of America Corporation cut shares of Discover Financial Services from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and decreased their target price for the company from $67.00 to $63.00 in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Finally, Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. set a $69.00 target price on shares of Discover Financial Services and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 26th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and seventeen have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $74.21.

In related news, EVP Carlos Minetti sold 8,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, July 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.42, for a total transaction of $499,360.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 205,149 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $12,805,400.58. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, COO Roger C. Hochschild sold 15,258 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, July 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.48, for a total value of $953,319.84. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 830,257 shares in the company, valued at $51,874,457.36. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders have sold 107,744 shares of company stock valued at $6,658,830. Corporate insiders own 0.96% of the company’s stock.

About Discover Financial Services

Discover Financial Services (DFS) is a direct banking and payment services company. The Company is a bank holding company, as well as a financial holding company. The Company operates through two segments: Direct Banking and Payment Services. It provides direct banking products and services, and payment services through its subsidiaries.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS)

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