Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Mastercard Incorporated (NYSE:MA) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report published on Wednesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Mastercard’s stock has outperformed the industry year to date. Its third-quarter 2017 earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate, mainly driven by strong transaction, higher cross border volumes and gains from acquisitions. Mastercard is well positioned for growth given its solid market position, ongoing expansion and digital initiatives, and significant opportunities from the secular shift toward electronic payments. The acquisitions of VocaLink and NuData Security complement the company’s efforts to participate in new payment flows and enhance its safety and security offerings. It, however, continues to face increasing costs, a volatile forex environment and legal issues. Also, higher incentives and rewards will put pressure on the bottom line.”

Other equities analysts have also issued reports about the stock. Wedbush reissued a buy rating and issued a $140.00 price objective (up from $129.00) on shares of Mastercard in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. Susquehanna Bancshares Inc reissued a positive rating and issued a $158.00 price objective (up from $149.00) on shares of Mastercard in a research report on Friday, September 8th. Barclays PLC raised their price target on shares of Mastercard from $142.00 to $148.00 and gave the stock an overweight rating in a research report on Friday, September 8th. Citigroup Inc. raised their price target on shares of Mastercard from $157.00 to $167.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 18th. Finally, Instinet reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $163.00 price target (up from $153.00) on shares of Mastercard in a research report on Saturday, September 9th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and twenty-eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $157.68.

Shares of Mastercard (NYSE MA) traded up $0.25 on Wednesday, reaching $149.54. 1,795,900 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 3,162,116. Mastercard has a fifty-two week low of $99.51 and a fifty-two week high of $152.00. The firm has a market capitalization of $158,047.64, a PE ratio of 34.64, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.99 and a beta of 1.21. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.83, a current ratio of 1.66 and a quick ratio of 1.66.

Mastercard (NYSE:MA) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, October 31st. The credit services provider reported $1.34 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.23 by $0.11. Mastercard had a net margin of 38.70% and a return on equity of 78.38%. The business had revenue of $3.40 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.28 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $1.08 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 18.1% on a year-over-year basis. equities research analysts predict that Mastercard will post 4.54 EPS for the current year.

WARNING: This piece of content was originally published by Watch List News and is the property of of Watch List News. If you are viewing this piece of content on another publication, it was illegally stolen and republished in violation of US & international trademark & copyright legislation. The original version of this piece of content can be viewed at https://www.watchlistnews.com/mastercard-incorporated-ma-downgraded-by-zacks-investment-research/1696008.html.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, November 9th. Shareholders of record on Friday, October 6th were issued a dividend of $0.22 per share. This represents a $0.88 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.59%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, October 5th. Mastercard’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 20.47%.

In related news, Director Richard Haythornthwaite sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $142.51, for a total value of $712,550.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 45,278 shares in the company, valued at $6,452,567.78. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Craig Vosburg sold 14,200 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $141.86, for a total transaction of $2,014,412.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 40,646 shares in the company, valued at $5,766,041.56. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 25,000 shares of company stock worth $3,582,984. Insiders own 0.30% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Boys Arnold & Co. Inc. increased its position in shares of Mastercard by 7.8% in the second quarter. Boys Arnold & Co. Inc. now owns 5,006 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $608,000 after purchasing an additional 363 shares during the last quarter. OMERS ADMINISTRATION Corp purchased a new stake in Mastercard in the second quarter worth approximately $2,351,000. Baldwin Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in Mastercard by 5.9% in the second quarter. Baldwin Investment Management LLC now owns 3,600 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $437,000 after buying an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. Personal Capital Advisors Corp boosted its stake in shares of Mastercard by 3.3% during the second quarter. Personal Capital Advisors Corp now owns 270,438 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $32,845,000 after purchasing an additional 8,670 shares during the period. Finally, IBM Retirement Fund boosted its stake in shares of Mastercard by 68.8% during the second quarter. IBM Retirement Fund now owns 23,051 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $3,128,000 after purchasing an additional 9,397 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 76.08% of the company’s stock.

About Mastercard

MasterCard Incorporated is a technology company that connects consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses across the world, enabling them to use electronic forms of payment. The Company operates through Payment Solutions segment. The Company allows user to make payments by creating a range of payment solutions and services using its brands, which include MasterCard, Maestro and Cirrus.

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on Mastercard (MA)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Analyst Recommendations for Mastercard (NYSE:MA)

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