First Data (FDC) Downgraded by Cowen to “Market Perform”

First Data (NYSE:FDC) was downgraded by equities researchers at Cowen from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a report issued on Thursday. They currently have a $22.74 price target on the business services provider’s stock, down from their previous price target of $28.00. Cowen’s price objective points to a potential upside of 3.84% from the stock’s previous close.

Several other analysts also recently issued reports on FDC. BMO Capital Markets started coverage on First Data in a research note on Wednesday, September 26th. They set a “market perform” rating and a $26.00 target price on the stock. Piper Jaffray Companies restated a “buy” rating and set a $37.00 price target on shares of First Data in a report on Thursday, September 27th. ValuEngine cut First Data from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, October 11th. Nomura raised their price target on First Data from $21.00 to $26.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 17th. Finally, Robert W. Baird raised their price target on First Data from $28.00 to $30.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, October 19th. Twelve research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fifteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. First Data has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $24.71.

FDC traded up $0.66 on Thursday, hitting $21.90. 1,704,275 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 7,003,685. The company has a market capitalization of $16.43 billion, a PE ratio of 17.08, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.32 and a beta of 1.74. First Data has a one year low of $14.73 and a one year high of $26.62. The company has a current ratio of 1.02, a quick ratio of 1.02 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.47.

First Data (NYSE:FDC) last issued its earnings results on Monday, October 29th. The business services provider reported $0.35 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.37 by ($0.02). The business had revenue of $2.16 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.22 billion. First Data had a net margin of 17.48% and a return on equity of 19.33%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.40 EPS. Equities research analysts predict that First Data will post 1.2 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, insider Barry C. Mccarthy sold 35,000 shares of First Data stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $18.69, for a total value of $654,150.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 368,571 shares in the company, valued at approximately $6,888,591.99. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Cynthia A. Armine-Klein sold 99,510 shares of First Data stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, November 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $19.00, for a total value of $1,890,690.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 662,767 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $12,592,573. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 248,025 shares of company stock valued at $4,716,382. Company insiders own 5.60% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc lifted its stake in shares of First Data by 18.9% during the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 46,971,246 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $1,149,387,000 after acquiring an additional 7,465,388 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in shares of First Data by 6.8% during the 3rd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 29,739,940 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $727,737,000 after acquiring an additional 1,897,915 shares during the last quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board lifted its stake in shares of First Data by 13.4% during the 3rd quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 18,728,704 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $458,291,000 after acquiring an additional 2,220,347 shares during the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its stake in shares of First Data by 14.4% during the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 12,192,568 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $298,352,000 after acquiring an additional 1,536,267 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Credit Suisse AG lifted its stake in shares of First Data by 11.5% during the 3rd quarter. Credit Suisse AG now owns 8,222,413 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $201,203,000 after acquiring an additional 848,576 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 56.20% of the company’s stock.

First Data Company Profile

First Data Corporation provides electronic commerce solutions for merchants, financial institutions, and card issuers worldwide. It operates through three segments: Global Business Solutions (GBS), Global Financial Solutions (GFS), and Network & Security Solutions (NSS). The GBS segment offers retail point-of-sale merchant acquiring and e-commerce services; and mobile payment services, as well as its cloud-based Clover point-of-sale operating system, which includes a marketplace for proprietary and third-party business applications.

Further Reading: Hedge Funds – Risk or Reward?

Analyst Recommendations for First Data (NYSE:FDC)

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