Willis Towers Watson PLC (NASDAQ:WLTW) – Jefferies Group lowered their FY2017 earnings per share estimates for Willis Towers Watson PLC in a research report issued on Friday. Jefferies Group analyst D. Styblo now forecasts that the firm will post earnings of $8.63 per share for the year, down from their previous estimate of $8.71. Jefferies Group has a “Buy” rating and a $150.00 price objective on the stock.
WLTW has been the topic of a number of other reports. Barclays PLC reiterated an “overweight” rating and issued a $148.00 target price on shares of Willis Towers Watson PLC in a report on Monday, September 26th. Langen Mcalenn downgraded shares of Willis Towers Watson PLC from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, June 24th. Citigroup Inc. dropped their target price on shares of Willis Towers Watson PLC from $148.00 to $140.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, August 9th. Wells Fargo & Co. restated a “sell” rating on shares of Willis Towers Watson PLC in a report on Friday. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG restated a “hold” rating and set a $122.00 price target on shares of Willis Towers Watson PLC in a report on Tuesday, June 28th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating, eleven have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $127.64.
Willis Towers Watson PLC (NASDAQ:WLTW) opened at 131.20 on Monday. Willis Towers Watson PLC has a one year low of $104.11 and a one year high of $133.40. The firm has a market cap of $18.11 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 33.68 and a beta of 0.74. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $125.31 and a 200-day moving average of $123.72.
Willis Towers Watson PLC (NASDAQ:WLTW) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, August 5th. The company reported $1.66 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.65 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $1.98 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.98 billion. Willis Towers Watson PLC had a net margin of 6.71% and a return on equity of 11.66%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 114.2% on a year-over-year basis.
Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of WLTW. BlackRock Fund Advisors purchased a new stake in Willis Towers Watson PLC during the first quarter valued at about $139,264,000. BlackRock Group LTD bought a new position in Willis Towers Watson PLC during the first quarter valued at approximately $112,416,000. BlackRock Inc. bought a new position in Willis Towers Watson PLC during the first quarter valued at approximately $26,062,000. Franklin Resources Inc. bought a new position in Willis Towers Watson PLC during the first quarter valued at approximately $118,507,000. Finally, Bancorpsouth Inc. bought a new position in Willis Towers Watson PLC during the first quarter valued at approximately $269,000. 91.14% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
In related news, Director Anna C. Catalano sold 390 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $122.00, for a total transaction of $47,580.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, insider Nicolas Aubert sold 3,149 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, September 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $126.65, for a total transaction of $398,820.85. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 6.40% of the company’s stock.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 17th. Investors of record on Friday, September 30th will be issued a dividend of $0.48 per share. This represents a $1.92 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.45%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 28th. Willis Towers Watson PLC’s dividend payout ratio is currently 53.25%.
About Willis Towers Watson PLC
Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company (Willis Towers Watson) is a holding company. The Company operates as a global advisory, broking and solutions company. It is engaged in offering risk management, insurance broking, consulting, technology and solutions, and private exchanges. The Company operates through eight segments: Willis International; Willis North America; Willis Capital, Wholesale & Reinsurance (CWR); Willis GB; Towers Watson Benefits; Towers Watson Exchange Solutions; Towers Watson Risk and Financial Services; and Towers Watson Talent and Rewards.
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