Korea Investment CORP reduced its stake in shares of The Western Union Company (NYSE:WU) by 24.1% during the 4th quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The firm owned 251,662 shares of the credit services provider’s stock after selling 80,000 shares during the period. Korea Investment CORP’s holdings in The Western Union were worth $4,293,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in The Western Union by 11.2% in the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 46,384,514 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $791,319,000 after buying an additional 4,686,559 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp boosted its stake in The Western Union by 53,019.7% in the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 29,221,152 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $556,956,000 after buying an additional 29,166,142 shares in the last quarter. Lyrical Asset Management LP boosted its stake in shares of The Western Union by 6.5% during the third quarter. Lyrical Asset Management LP now owns 13,200,987 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $251,611,000 after purchasing an additional 809,286 shares in the last quarter. Jupiter Asset Management Ltd. boosted its stake in shares of The Western Union by 83.4% during the third quarter. Jupiter Asset Management Ltd. now owns 11,775,000 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $224,432,000 after purchasing an additional 5,353,000 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Clarkston Capital Partners LLC boosted its stake in shares of The Western Union by 3.0% during the fourth quarter. Clarkston Capital Partners LLC now owns 10,711,700 shares of the credit services provider’s stock valued at $182,742,000 after purchasing an additional 308,324 shares in the last quarter. 99.88% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
In other news, CFO Rajesh K. Agrawal sold 21,950 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $18.35, for a total transaction of $402,782.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 266,009 shares in the company, valued at $4,881,265.15. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. 1.10% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
The Western Union (NYSE:WU) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 7th. The credit services provider reported $0.49 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.49. The Western Union had a negative return on equity of 225.33% and a net margin of 15.24%. The company had revenue of $1.40 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.44 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.47 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 2.6% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, research analysts predict that The Western Union Company will post 1.87 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 29th. Stockholders of record on Friday, March 15th will be given a dividend of $0.20 per share. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.40%. This is an increase from The Western Union’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.19. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, March 14th. The Western Union’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 39.58%.
WU has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered The Western Union from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, January 12th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods initiated coverage on The Western Union in a research note on Thursday, December 6th. They set a “market perform” rating on the stock. Finally, ValuEngine lowered The Western Union from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, February 15th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and four have assigned a hold rating to the company’s stock. The Western Union presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $20.00.
About The Western Union
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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