Global Payments (GPN) Reaches New 52-Week High on Analyst Upgrade

Global Payments Inc (NYSE:GPN)’s share price reached a new 52-week high on Thursday after Robert W. Baird raised their price target on the stock from $160.00 to $174.00. Robert W. Baird currently has an outperform rating on the stock. Global Payments traded as high as $152.24 and last traded at $151.96, with a volume of 456619 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $147.67.

A number of other brokerages have also recently commented on GPN. BMO Capital Markets cut shares of Global Payments from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and increased their price objective for the company from $164.00 to $173.00 in a research note on Wednesday. Oppenheimer increased their price objective on shares of Global Payments from $152.00 to $161.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Wednesday. Guggenheim raised shares of Global Payments from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday. Susquehanna Bancshares raised shares of Global Payments from a “neutral” rating to a “positive” rating and increased their price objective for the company from $130.00 to $170.00 in a research note on Tuesday, May 7th. Finally, Morgan Stanley increased their price objective on shares of Global Payments from $128.00 to $137.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 7th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and twenty have given a buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $146.31.

In other news, Director Alan M. Silberstein sold 4,276 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, March 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $132.43, for a total transaction of $566,270.68. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 51,049 shares in the company, valued at approximately $6,760,419.07. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Robert H. B. Baldwin, Jr. sold 4,250 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $146.36, for a total transaction of $622,030.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 48,382 shares in the company, valued at $7,081,189.52. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 211,079 shares of company stock worth $27,503,399 over the last ninety days. 0.88% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Stephens Investment Management Group LLC raised its holdings in Global Payments by 6.4% in the first quarter. Stephens Investment Management Group LLC now owns 53,565 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $7,313,000 after buying an additional 3,214 shares during the period. Wetherby Asset Management Inc. raised its holdings in Global Payments by 2.1% in the first quarter. Wetherby Asset Management Inc. now owns 10,635 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $1,452,000 after buying an additional 221 shares during the period. Psagot Investment House Ltd. raised its holdings in Global Payments by 93.8% in the fourth quarter. Psagot Investment House Ltd. now owns 24,613 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $2,538,000 after buying an additional 11,913 shares during the period. Conning Inc. raised its holdings in Global Payments by 3.7% in the first quarter. Conning Inc. now owns 2,510 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $343,000 after buying an additional 90 shares during the period. Finally, LS Investment Advisors LLC raised its holdings in Global Payments by 17.1% in the first quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 7,263 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $992,000 after buying an additional 1,062 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 97.48% of the company’s stock.

The company has a current ratio of 1.03, a quick ratio of 1.03 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.25. The firm has a market cap of $23.40 billion, a P/E ratio of 29.47, a P/E/G ratio of 1.51 and a beta of 1.20.

Global Payments (NYSE:GPN) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 2nd. The business services provider reported $1.34 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.22 by $0.12. Global Payments had a net margin of 13.69% and a return on equity of 19.83%. The firm had revenue of $1.04 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.04 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.13 earnings per share. Global Payments’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.8% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, analysts forecast that Global Payments Inc will post 5.79 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 28th. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 14th will be given a $0.01 dividend. This represents a $0.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.03%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, June 13th. Global Payments’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 0.77%.

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Global Payments Company Profile (NYSE:GPN)

Global Payments Inc provides payment technology and software solutions for card, electronic, check, and digital-based payments. The company operates in three segments: North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific. It offers authorization services, settlement and funding services, customer support and help-desk functions, chargeback resolution, terminal rental, sales and deployment, payment security services, consolidated billing and statements, and online reporting services.

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