Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of S&P Global Inc. (NYSE:SPGI) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note released on Tuesday. They currently have $170.00 price target on the business services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “S&P Global’s portfolio restructuring efforts and focus on core businesses are likely to drive growth in the future. This apart, strategic acquisitions and positive industry trends augur well for long-term growth. The acquisition of SNL Financial is a strategic fit for S&P Global as its business is in sync with the S&P Capital IQ and Platts businesses, which will help the latter to avail cost cuts and generate revenue synergies. The company’s Standard & Poor's Ratings Services appears to be a long-term growth driver as corporate and U.S. structured finance issuance is picking up momentum with increasing capital infusion in the economy as well as positive growth in M&A activity. The company outperformed the industry year to date. Management further increased its guidance on favorable growth dynamics. However, its performance is likely to be hurt by lower volume of debt securities issued in the capital markets.”

Other equities analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. Argus reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $158.00 target price (up from $150.00) on shares of S&P Global in a report on Monday, May 29th. UBS AG raised their target price on S&P Global from $154.00 to $175.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Friday, July 28th. Morgan Stanley reaffirmed an equal weight rating and issued a $146.00 target price (up from $145.00) on shares of S&P Global in a report on Friday, July 14th. BMO Capital Markets raised their target price on S&P Global from $152.00 to $161.00 and gave the stock a no rating at time rating in a report on Friday, July 14th. Finally, Barclays PLC raised their target price on S&P Global from $150.00 to $155.00 and gave the stock an overweight rating in a report on Wednesday, June 28th. One analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. S&P Global has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $155.50.

Shares of S&P Global (SPGI) traded down 0.12% during trading on Tuesday, hitting $154.15. The stock had a trading volume of 65,498 shares. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $151.58 and its 200 day moving average price is $140.39. S&P Global has a 1-year low of $107.21 and a 1-year high of $158.35. The firm has a market capitalization of $39.62 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.96 and a beta of 1.52.

S&P Global (NYSE:SPGI) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The business services provider reported $1.72 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.57 by $0.15. S&P Global had a return on equity of 202.37% and a net margin of 38.78%. The company had revenue of $1.51 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.46 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $1.44 EPS. S&P Global’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.8% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts anticipate that S&P Global will post $6.34 earnings per share for the current year.

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The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 12th. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 28th will be paid a $0.41 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, August 24th. This represents a $1.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.06%. S&P Global’s payout ratio is presently 19.16%.

In other S&P Global news, SVP Nancy Luquette sold 860 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $151.50, for a total value of $130,290.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 106 shares in the company, valued at approximately $16,059. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Corporate insiders own 0.20% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of SPGI. Advisory Services Network LLC acquired a new stake in shares of S&P Global during the first quarter worth about $101,000. American Beacon Advisors Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of S&P Global during the first quarter worth about $103,000. Penserra Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of S&P Global during the second quarter worth about $106,000. State of Alaska Department of Revenue acquired a new stake in shares of S&P Global during the first quarter worth about $125,000. Finally, Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America raised its stake in shares of S&P Global by 1.0% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 999 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $131,000 after buying an additional 10 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 85.39% of the company’s stock.

S&P Global Company Profile

S&P Global Inc, formerly McGraw Hill Financial Inc, is a provider of ratings, benchmarks, analytics and data to the capital and commodity markets around the world. The Company operates through three segments: Ratings, which provides credit ratings, research and analytics to investors, issuers and other market participants; Market and Commodities Intelligence, which offers multi-asset-class data, research and analytical capabilities that integrate cross-asset analytics and desktop services, and deliver their customers in the commodity and energy markets access to information, data, analytic services and pricing and benchmarks, and S&P Dow Jones Indices (Indices), which is an index provider that maintains a range of valuation and index benchmarks for investment advisors, wealth managers and institutional investors.

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Analyst Recommendations for S&P Global (NYSE:SPGI)

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