Moody’s (NYSE:MCO) Hits New 12-Month High After Earnings Beat

Moody’s Co. (NYSE:MCO) reached a new 52-week high during trading on Wednesday following a better than expected earnings announcement. The stock traded as high as $215.72 and last traded at $212.19, with a volume of 5385 shares. The stock had previously closed at $202.24.

The business services provider reported $2.07 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.98 by $0.09. Moody’s had a return on equity of 281.55% and a net margin of 29.38%. The firm had revenue of $1.21 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.20 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $2.04 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.3% compared to the same quarter last year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 10th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, August 20th will be given a $0.50 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, August 19th. This represents a $2.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.94%. Moody’s’s dividend payout ratio is currently 27.06%.

MCO has been the topic of several analyst reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price objective on Moody’s from $220.00 to $240.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Thursday. Morgan Stanley upped their price objective on shares of Moody’s from $150.00 to $164.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 10th. UBS Group upped their price objective on shares of Moody’s from $200.00 to $215.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday. Cantor Fitzgerald upped their price objective on shares of Moody’s from $168.00 to $192.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday, April 25th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus upped their price objective on shares of Moody’s from $214.00 to $228.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday. 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 presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $196.30.

In related news, CEO Raymond W. Mcdaniel sold 7,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, July 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $198.46, for a total value of $1,488,450.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 212,794 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $42,231,097.24. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Raymond W. Mcdaniel sold 55,422 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, June 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $182.23, for a total transaction of $10,099,551.06. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 275,716 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $50,243,726.68. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 147,854 shares of company stock valued at $27,854,940 in the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 0.90% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. University of Texas Texas AM Investment Managment Co. purchased a new position in Moody’s during the 1st quarter valued at about $36,000. Resources Investment Advisors Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Moody’s in the first quarter valued at about $40,000. Ibex Wealth Advisors acquired a new stake in shares of Moody’s in the second quarter valued at about $41,000. Berman Capital Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Moody’s by 34.2% in the second quarter. Berman Capital Advisors LLC now owns 247 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $48,000 after buying an additional 63 shares during the period. Finally, CWM LLC increased its stake in shares of Moody’s by 123.0% in the first quarter. CWM LLC now owns 310 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $56,000 after buying an additional 171 shares during the period. 92.68% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

The company has a market capitalization of $38.34 billion, a P/E ratio of 28.89, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.97 and a beta of 1.25. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $199.87. The company has a current ratio of 1.45, a quick ratio of 1.45 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 17.70.

About Moody’s (NYSE:MCO)

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.

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