Cantor Fitzgerald Raises Moody’s (MCO) Price Target to $192.00

Moody’s (NYSE:MCO) had its target price lifted by Cantor Fitzgerald from $168.00 to $192.00 in a research note released on Thursday, The Fly reports. The brokerage currently has a neutral rating on the business services provider’s stock.

MCO has been the subject of a number of other reports. UBS Group decreased their price target on shares of Moody’s from $156.00 to $154.00 and set a neutral rating for the company in a research report on Tuesday, January 8th. BMO Capital Markets upped their price target on shares of Moody’s to $172.00 and gave the stock a market perform rating in a research report on Tuesday, February 19th. ValuEngine raised shares of Moody’s from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Tuesday, March 19th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Moody’s from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Thursday, January 3rd. Finally, Morgan Stanley cut shares of Moody’s from an equal weight rating to an underweight rating and set a $135.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, January 8th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. Moody’s currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $183.00.

Shares of Moody’s stock opened at $195.56 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 17.07, a current ratio of 1.45 and a quick ratio of 1.61. Moody’s has a twelve month low of $129.26 and a twelve month high of $195.85. The firm has a market cap of $36.92 billion, a P/E ratio of 26.46, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.36 and a beta of 1.29.

Moody’s (NYSE:MCO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th. The business services provider reported $2.07 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.88 by $0.19. Moody’s had a net margin of 29.38% and a return on equity of 281.55%. The firm had revenue of $1.14 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.13 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $2.02 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, sell-side analysts expect that Moody’s will post 7.91 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 10th. Shareholders of record on Monday, May 20th will be given a $0.50 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, May 17th. This represents a $2.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.02%. Moody’s’s payout ratio is currently 27.06%.

In other Moody’s news, insider Raymond W. Mcdaniel sold 44,146 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, April 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $183.95, for a total value of $8,120,656.70. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 229,749 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $42,262,328.55. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Corporate insiders own 0.90% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of MCO. Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its stake in shares of Moody’s by 0.7% in the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,423,853 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $238,071,000 after purchasing an additional 9,246 shares in the last quarter. Standard Life Aberdeen plc raised its stake in shares of Moody’s by 10.2% in the 3rd quarter. Standard Life Aberdeen plc now owns 55,922 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $9,350,000 after purchasing an additional 5,176 shares in the last quarter. LPL Financial LLC raised its stake in shares of Moody’s by 39.0% in the 3rd quarter. LPL Financial LLC now owns 10,132 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $1,694,000 after purchasing an additional 2,844 shares in the last quarter. Jane Street Group LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Moody’s in the 3rd quarter valued at about $566,000. Finally, Man Group plc raised its stake in shares of Moody’s by 16.0% in the 3rd quarter. Man Group plc now owns 17,654 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $2,952,000 after purchasing an additional 2,435 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 94.10% of the company’s stock.

About Moody’s

Moody's Corporation provides credit ratings; and credit, capital markets, and economic research, data, and analytical tools worldwide. It operates through two segments, Moody's Investors Service and Moody's Analytics. The Moody's Investors Service segment publishes credit ratings on various debt obligations and entities that issue such obligations, such as various corporate and governmental obligations, structured finance securities, and commercial paper programs.

Further Reading: Short Selling

The Fly

Analyst Recommendations for Moody`s (NYSE:MCO)

Receive News & Ratings for Moody's Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Moody's and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.