Investors Purchase High Volume of Call Options on Morgan Stanley (MS)

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) was the recipient of some unusual options trading activity on Wednesday. Traders acquired 6,765 call options on the company. This represents an increase of 381% compared to the typical daily volume of 1,407 call options.

Morgan Stanley (NYSE MS) opened at $48.70 on Monday. Morgan Stanley has a one year low of $39.89 and a one year high of $51.52. The company has a current ratio of 0.74, a quick ratio of 0.74 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.68. The company has a market cap of $88,044.69, a PE ratio of 13.49, a PEG ratio of 1.12 and a beta of 1.66.

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 17th. The financial services provider reported $0.93 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.81 by $0.12. Morgan Stanley had a net margin of 16.76% and a return on equity of 10.07%. The company had revenue of $9.20 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.05 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.80 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 3.2% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts forecast that Morgan Stanley will post 3.57 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, November 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, October 31st were paid a dividend of $0.25 per share. This represents a $1.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.05%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, October 30th. Morgan Stanley’s dividend payout ratio is currently 27.70%.

Several equities research analysts have commented on MS shares. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Morgan Stanley from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $56.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Friday, October 20th. set a $54.00 target price on shares of Morgan Stanley and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, August 11th. Buckingham Research boosted their target price on shares of Morgan Stanley from $54.00 to $57.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 18th. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. restated a “hold” rating on shares of Morgan Stanley in a research report on Tuesday, October 17th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets restated a “top pick” rating and set a $69.00 target price 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, eight have assigned a hold rating, seventeen have given a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $50.39.

In related news, insider Jeffrey S. Brodsky sold 16,397 shares of Morgan Stanley stock in a transaction on Wednesday, October 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $50.07, for a total value of $820,997.79. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 111,776 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,596,624.32. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, President Thomas Colm Kelleher sold 40,000 shares of Morgan Stanley stock in a transaction on Monday, October 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $50.59, for a total transaction of $2,023,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the president now owns 692,037 shares in the company, valued at $35,010,151.83. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 0.24% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Americafirst Capital Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Morgan Stanley during the 3rd quarter valued at about $313,000. Belpointe Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Morgan Stanley during the 3rd quarter valued at about $464,000. IFM Investors Pty Ltd increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 2.7% during the 3rd quarter. IFM Investors Pty Ltd now owns 39,081 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,883,000 after acquiring an additional 1,041 shares during the last quarter. Coldstream Capital Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Morgan Stanley during the 3rd quarter valued at about $268,000. Finally, Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 0.9% during the 3rd quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC now owns 285,183 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $13,737,000 after acquiring an additional 2,595 shares during the last quarter. 85.67% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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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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