Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. lifted its stake in shares of The Western Union Company (NYSE:WU) by 54.4% in the 1st quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 65,736 shares of the credit services provider’s stock after buying an additional 23,169 shares during the quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc.’s holdings in The Western Union were worth $1,214,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.
Other hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Norges Bank acquired a new stake in The Western Union in the 4th quarter valued at $85,840,000. BlackRock Inc. raised its stake in The Western Union by 11.2% in the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 46,384,514 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $791,319,000 after acquiring an additional 4,686,559 shares during the period. D. E. Shaw & Co. Inc. raised its stake in The Western Union by 176.9% in the 4th quarter. D. E. Shaw & Co. Inc. now owns 1,827,783 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $31,182,000 after acquiring an additional 1,167,589 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its stake in The Western Union by 16,646.5% in the 1st quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 1,104,597 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $20,402,000 after acquiring an additional 1,098,001 shares during the period. Finally, Investec Asset Management LTD bought a new stake in The Western Union in the 4th quarter valued at about $17,366,000.
A number of research analysts have weighed in on WU shares. Northcoast Research lowered The Western Union from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 8th. Zacks Investment Research lowered The Western Union from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Saturday, April 27th. Finally, ValuEngine raised The Western Union from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, March 22nd. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and five have assigned a hold rating to the company. The Western Union currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $20.00.
The Western Union (NYSE:WU) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, May 7th. The credit services provider reported $0.39 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.43 by ($0.04). The Western Union had a net margin of 14.65% and a negative return on equity of 216.66%. The business had revenue of $1.34 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.36 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.45 EPS. The Western Union’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.8% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, research analysts forecast that The Western Union Company will post 1.8 earnings per share for the current year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 28th. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 14th will be issued a $0.20 dividend. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.02%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, June 13th. The Western Union’s dividend payout ratio is presently 41.67%.
In other The Western Union news, EVP Richard L. Williams sold 16,000 shares of The Western Union stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, June 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $20.01, for a total value of $320,160.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 108,782 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,176,727.82. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. 1.33% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
The Western Union Company Profile
The Western Union Company provides money movement and payment services worldwide. The company operates in two segments, Consumer-to-Consumer and Business Solutions. The Consumer-to-Consumer segment facilitates money transfers between two consumers, primarily through a network of third-party agents. This segment offers international cross-border transfers and intra-country transfers, as well as money transfer transactions through Websites and mobile devices.
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