Discover Financial Services (DFS) Receives Consensus Recommendation of “Buy” from Analysts

Shares of Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) have been assigned an average rating of “Buy” from the sixteen analysts that are currently covering the stock, Marketbeat Ratings reports. Eight investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and eight have issued a buy recommendation on the company. The average 12 month price objective among brokers that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $81.61.

A number of equities research analysts have recently weighed in on DFS shares. ValuEngine upgraded Discover Financial Services from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, March 15th. BMO Capital Markets dropped their price target on Discover Financial Services to $85.00 and set a “market perform” rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, January 25th. Bank of America set a $80.00 price target on Discover Financial Services and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, January 25th. Stephens restated a “hold” rating and set a $80.00 price target on shares of Discover Financial Services in a research note on Sunday, January 6th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered Discover Financial Services from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, January 7th.

In other news, CEO Roger C. Hochschild bought 30,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, January 28th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $66.67 per share, for a total transaction of $2,000,100.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 834,457 shares in the company, valued at $55,633,248.19. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider David W. Nelms sold 29,300 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $72.46, for a total value of $2,123,078.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 970,891 shares in the company, valued at approximately $70,350,761.86. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 113,312 shares of company stock worth $7,855,704. 0.81% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in DFS. Norges Bank acquired a new position in Discover Financial Services in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $162,561,000. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund lifted its holdings in Discover Financial Services by 5,727.1% in the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 2,230,742 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $38,000 after acquiring an additional 2,192,460 shares during the period. Principal Financial Group Inc. lifted its holdings in Discover Financial Services by 15.4% in the fourth quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 3,765,063 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $222,063,000 after acquiring an additional 502,539 shares during the period. MERIAN GLOBAL INVESTORS UK Ltd acquired a new position in Discover Financial Services in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $28,197,000. Finally, Man Group plc lifted its holdings in Discover Financial Services by 95.8% in the third quarter. Man Group plc now owns 953,485 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $72,894,000 after acquiring an additional 466,429 shares during the period. 87.31% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Discover Financial Services stock traded up $0.12 during trading hours on Thursday, reaching $73.62. The stock had a trading volume of 194,739 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,990,893. The company has a market capitalization of $23.37 billion, a PE ratio of 9.45, a P/E/G ratio of 1.03 and a beta of 1.60. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.58, a quick ratio of 1.44 and a current ratio of 1.44. Discover Financial Services has a 52 week low of $54.36 and a 52 week high of $80.36.

Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, January 24th. The financial services provider reported $2.03 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.09 by ($0.06). Discover Financial Services had a return on equity of 26.22% and a net margin of 21.25%. The firm had revenue of $2.81 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.81 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.51 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts predict that Discover Financial Services will post 8.64 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, March 7th. Investors of record on Thursday, February 21st were given a $0.40 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, February 20th. This represents a $1.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.17%. Discover Financial Services’s dividend payout ratio is currently 20.54%.

About Discover Financial Services

Discover Financial Services, through its subsidiaries, operates as a direct banking and payment services company in the United States. The Direct Banking segment offers Discover-branded credit cards to individuals; and other consumer products and services, including private student loans, personal loans, home equity loans, and other consumer lending, as well as deposit products, such as certificates of deposit, money market accounts, savings accounts, checking accounts, and individual retirement arrangement certificates of deposit.

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Analyst Recommendations for Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS)

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