Shares of First Data Corp (NYSE:FDC) have been assigned an average recommendation of “Hold” from the thirty analysts that are presently covering the stock, Marketbeat reports. Twenty analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company. The average twelve-month price objective among brokers that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $24.40.

A number of equities research analysts have recently commented on the stock. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of First Data from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 13th. ValuEngine raised shares of First Data from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, January 2nd. Cowen cut shares of First Data from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and reduced their target price for the company from $28.00 to $22.74 in a report on Thursday, January 17th. Piper Jaffray Companies cut shares of First Data from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 6th. Finally, Susquehanna Bancshares reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and issued a $25.00 target price (down from $29.00) on shares of First Data in a report on Thursday, February 7th.

Shares of NYSE:FDC traded down $0.31 on Thursday, reaching $25.38. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 257,560 shares, compared to its average volume of 9,418,794. First Data has a 52-week low of $14.73 and a 52-week high of $27.15. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.36, a quick ratio of 1.02 and a current ratio of 1.02. The stock has a market capitalization of $24.08 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.01, a PEG ratio of 1.39 and a beta of 2.28.

First Data (NYSE:FDC) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, February 6th. The business services provider reported $0.38 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.32 by $0.06. First Data had a net margin of 10.58% and a return on equity of 18.14%. The business had revenue of $2.19 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.19 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.44 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 2.9% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, research analysts forecast that First Data will post 1.39 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other First Data news, insider Ivo M. Distelbrink sold 20,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.36, for a total transaction of $507,200.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 274,114 shares in the company, valued at $6,951,531.04. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, President Guy Chiarello sold 203,647 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $25.85, for a total transaction of $5,264,274.95. Following the transaction, the president now owns 1,324,235 shares in the company, valued at $34,231,474.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 375,384 shares of company stock valued at $9,680,575 over the last three months. 4.87% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. DNB Asset Management AS grew its position in First Data by 11.7% during the first quarter. DNB Asset Management AS now owns 56,824 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $1,493,000 after buying an additional 5,961 shares during the period. CenturyLink Investment Management Co grew its position in First Data by 21.1% during the first quarter. CenturyLink Investment Management Co now owns 69,154 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $1,817,000 after buying an additional 12,038 shares during the period. Tibra Equities Europe Ltd acquired a new position in First Data during the first quarter worth about $5,609,000. Jackson Hole Capital Partners LLC acquired a new stake in shares of First Data in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $362,000. Finally, MUFG Securities EMEA plc grew its position in shares of First Data by 142.1% in the fourth quarter. MUFG Securities EMEA plc now owns 968,500 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $16,377,000 after purchasing an additional 568,500 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 56.66% 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.

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Analyst Recommendations for First Data (NYSE:FDC)

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