The Western Union Company (NYSE:WU – Get Rating) declared a quarterly dividend on Thursday, May 19, reports RTT News. Shareholders of record on Thursday June 16 will be paid a dividend of 0.235 per share by the credit service provider on Thursday June 30. This represents a dividend of $0.94 on an annualized basis and a yield of 5.53%.
Western Union has increased its dividend by an average of 7.3% per year for the past three years and has increased its dividend every year for the past 7 years. Western Union has a payout ratio of 48.7%, indicating that its dividend is sufficiently covered by earnings. Stock analysts expect Western Union to earn $1.95 per share next year, meaning the company should continue to be able to cover its $0.94 annual dividend with a payout ratio. expected future of 48.2%.
Shares of NYSE WU traded down $0.16 in Thursday’s midday session, hitting $16.99. The stock recorded a trading volume of 4,221,379 shares, compared to an average volume of 5,261,106 shares. The company has a market capitalization of $6.56 billion, a PE ratio of 7.56 and a beta of 0.92. The stock has a 50-day simple moving average of $18.23 and a 200-day simple moving average of $18.16. Western Union has a 1-year minimum of $15.69 and a 1-year maximum of $25.34. The company has a quick ratio of 0.98, a current ratio of 0.98 and a debt ratio of 7.18.
Western Union (NYSE:WU – Get Rating) last released its results on Thursday, April 28. The credit services provider reported earnings per share of $0.51 for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.44 by $0.07. The company posted revenue of $1.16 billion for the quarter, versus a consensus estimate of $1.16 billion. Western Union had a return on equity of 269.10% and a net margin of 18.29%. The company’s quarterly revenue fell 4.5% from the same quarter last year. In the same quarter last year, the company posted earnings per share of $0.44. As a group, analysts expect Western Union to post 1.8 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Western Union said its board authorized a stock repurchase plan on Thursday, Feb. 10 that allows the company to repurchase $1.00 billion of outstanding stock. This repurchase authorization allows the credit service provider to purchase up to 13.5% of its shares through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans usually indicate that the company’s board of directors believe its stock is undervalued.
Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently changed their holdings in WU. State Street Corp increased its stake in Western Union by 10.4% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 16,856,481 shares of the credit service provider valued at $315,890,000 after purchasing an additional 1,592,331 shares during the period. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. increased its holdings in Western Union by 6.9% in the first quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. now owns 6,905,500 shares of the credit service provider valued at $129,409,000 after purchasing an additional 445,385 shares during the period. Northern Trust Corp increased its stake in Western Union by 11.2% in the first quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 6,359,798 shares of the credit service provider valued at $119,183,000 after purchasing an additional 639,297 shares during the period. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its holdings in Western Union by 58.5% during the 4th quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 2,780,244 shares of the credit service provider worth $49,600,000 after purchasing an additional 1,025,759 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its stake in Western Union by 18.2% during the 1st quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 2,410,073 shares of the credit service provider worth $45,173,000 after purchasing an additional 370,987 shares in the last quarter. 97.43% of the shares are held by institutional investors and hedge funds.
WU has been the subject of several research reports. StockNews.com launched coverage on Western Union in a research report on Thursday, March 31. They issued a “holding” rating on the stock. Citigroup downgraded Western Union from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a price target of $20.00 for the company. in a report on Friday, April 29. The Goldman Sachs Group launched coverage on Western Union in a report on Tuesday. They issued a “sell” rating and a price target of $18.00 for the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Western Union from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a price target of $20.00 for the company in a Thursday, April 14 report. Finally, Morgan Stanley reaffirmed a “sell” rating and issued a $15.50 price target on Western Union shares in a Friday, March 11 report. Four analysts gave the stock a sell rating, ten gave the company a hold rating and one gave the company a buy rating. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $19.96.
Western Union Company Profile (Get a rating)
The Western Union Company provides money transfer 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 and sub-agents; and offers international cross-border transfers and intra-country transfers, as well as money transfer transactions via websites and mobile devices.
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