Investors Buy American Express (AXP) on Weakness

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Investors bought shares of American Express (NYSE:AXP) on weakness during trading on Monday. $89.43 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $33.30 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $56.13 million into the stock. Of all companies tracked, American Express had the 10th highest net in-flow for the day. American Express traded down ($0.38) for the day and closed at $110.53

A number of analysts have recently commented on AXP shares. Bank of America downgraded American Express from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and dropped their price objective for the stock from $125.00 to $115.00 in a research note on Wednesday, December 19th. Wells Fargo & Co dropped their price objective on shares of American Express from $122.00 to $115.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, January 3rd. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of American Express from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, January 3rd. Morgan Stanley dropped their price objective on shares of American Express from $113.00 to $111.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, January 8th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $93.00 price objective on shares of American Express in a report on Friday, January 18th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. American Express currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $111.80.

The company has a current ratio of 1.93, a quick ratio of 1.93 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.62. The firm has a market capitalization of $93.22 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.21, a PEG ratio of 1.27 and a beta of 1.11.

American Express (NYSE:AXP) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, January 17th. The payment services company reported $1.74 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.80 by ($0.06). American Express had a return on equity of 30.35% and a net margin of 17.08%. The business had revenue of $10.47 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.54 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.58 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 7.9% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts forecast that American Express will post 8.17 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 10th. Investors of record on Friday, April 5th will be issued a $0.39 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, April 4th. This represents a $1.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.40%. American Express’s dividend payout ratio is presently 21.28%.

In other American Express news, Chairman Stephen J. Squeri sold 12,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $103.02, for a total value of $1,287,750.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Richard Petrino sold 2,444 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, February 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $107.11, for a total transaction of $261,776.84. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 7,591 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $813,072.01. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.21% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of AXP. Pearl River Capital LLC bought a new stake in American Express in the 4th quarter worth about $25,000. JNBA Financial Advisors purchased a new position in American Express during the 4th quarter worth approximately $26,000. Clarfeld Financial Advisors LLC purchased a new position in American Express during the 4th quarter worth approximately $31,000. Capital Investment Advisory Services LLC purchased a new position in American Express during the 4th quarter worth approximately $37,000. Finally, Vigilant Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of American Express during the 4th quarter worth approximately $38,000. 84.86% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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American Express Company Profile (NYSE:AXP)

American Express Company, together with its subsidiaries, provides charge and credit payment card products, and travel-related services to consumers and businesses worldwide. It operates through three segments: Global Consumer Services Group, Global Commercial Services, and Global Merchant and Network Services.

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