The Western Union Company (NYSE:WU) shares sold by IndexIQ Advisors LLC

IndexIQ Advisors LLC cut its stake in The Western Union Company (NYSE:WU – Get Rating) by 42.3% during the first quarter, according to the company in its latest SEC filing. The fund held 6,603 shares of the credit service provider after selling 4,843 shares during the quarter. IndexIQ Advisors LLC’s holdings in Western Union were worth $124,000 when it last filed with the SEC.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors also changed their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings of Western Union shares by 17.2% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 60,702,355 shares of the credit service provider valued at $1,082,930,000 after acquiring an additional 8,905,368 shares during the period. Schroder Investment Management Group increased its position in Western Union by 121.2% in the fourth quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 7,143,709 shares of the credit services provider worth $127,444,000 after buying an additional 3,914,104 shares in the last quarter. Discerene Group LP increased its stake in Western Union shares by 138.6% in the fourth quarter. Discerene Group LP now owns 5,681,336 shares of the credit service provider valued at $101,355,000 after purchasing an additional 3,299,899 shares during the period. Principal Financial Group Inc. increased its stake in Western Union shares by 162.5% in the fourth quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 1,429,917 shares of the credit service provider valued at $25,510,000 after purchasing an additional 885,273 shares during the period. Finally, Squarepoint Ops LLC increased its shareholding in Western Union shares by 346.0% during the fourth quarter. Squarepoint Ops LLC now owns 1,088,945 shares of the credit service provider valued at $19,427,000 after purchasing an additional 844,801 shares in the last quarter. 97.43% of the shares are held by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Wall Street analysts predict growth

Several analysts have recently commented on WU shares. Wolfe Research downgraded Western Union from a ‘market performer’ rating to an ‘underperformer’ rating and lowered its target price for the company from $20.00 to $17.00 in a research report Wednesday, July 20. UBS Group lowered its price target on Western Union from $19.00 to $18.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a Thursday, August 4, report. Barclays cut its price target on Western Union shares to $17.00 in a report on Tuesday. Northland Securities lowered its target price on Western Union shares from $24.00 to $22.00 in a Thursday, Aug. 4, research note. Finally, TheStreet downgraded Western Union shares from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a Tuesday, July 12 research note. Five research analysts gave the stock a sell rating, eight gave the company a hold rating and one gave the company a buy rating. Based on MarketBeat data, Western Union currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $18.89.

Western Union stock performance

WU stock opened at $16.69 on Friday. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $16.61 and a 200-day moving average price of $17.72. The company has a debt ratio of 6.01, a current ratio of 0.99 and a quick ratio of 0.99. The Western Union Company has a fifty-two week low of $15.30 and a fifty-two week high of $22.59. The stock has a market capitalization of $6.44 billion, a PE ratio of 7.48 and a beta of 0.89.

Western Union (NYSE:WU – Get Rating) last announced its results on Wednesday, August 3. The credit service provider reported earnings per share of $0.51 for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimate of $0.41 by $0.10. Western Union had a net margin of 18.27% and a return on equity of 239.89%. During the same period last year, the company posted earnings per share of $0.48. Analysts expect The Western Union Company to post EPS of 1.8 for the current year.

Western Union Dividend Announcement

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 30. Investors of record on Friday, September 16 will receive a dividend of $0.235. This represents an annualized dividend of $0.94 and a yield of 5.63%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 15. Western Union’s payout rate is 42.15%.

Western Union 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.

See also

Institutional ownership by quarter for Western Union (NYSE:WU)

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