Short Interest in TransUnion (TRU) Increases By 77.4%

TransUnion (NYSE:TRU) was the recipient of a significant increase in short interest in the month of October. As of October 31st, there was short interest totalling 4,293,303 shares, an increase of 77.4% from the October 15th total of 2,420,679 shares. Approximately 2.3% of the shares of the company are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 1,875,227 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 2.3 days.

In other TransUnion news, insider James M. Peck sold 141,428 shares of TransUnion stock in a transaction on Friday, October 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.04, for a total transaction of $8,774,193.12. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 381,627 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $23,676,139.08. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CAO Timothy Elberfeld sold 1,592 shares of TransUnion stock in a transaction on Thursday, November 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $66.14, for a total transaction of $105,294.88. Following the transaction, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 12,566 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $831,115.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.18% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of TRU. LPL Financial LLC acquired a new position in TransUnion in the first quarter valued at about $371,000. Principal Financial Group Inc. raised its stake in TransUnion by 11.1% in the first quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 3,781,747 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $214,728,000 after purchasing an additional 379,228 shares in the last quarter. Allianz Asset Management GmbH raised its stake in TransUnion by 59.9% in the first quarter. Allianz Asset Management GmbH now owns 267,303 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $15,177,000 after purchasing an additional 100,165 shares in the last quarter. IFM Investors Pty Ltd raised its stake in TransUnion by 62.9% in the second quarter. IFM Investors Pty Ltd now owns 8,546 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $612,000 after purchasing an additional 3,300 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue raised its stake in TransUnion by 32.2% in the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 21,945 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $1,572,000 after purchasing an additional 5,345 shares in the last quarter. 97.26% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

A number of equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. Morgan Stanley reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $75.00 target price (up previously from $71.00) on shares of TransUnion in a research report on Thursday, September 13th. Atlantic Securities raised shares of TransUnion from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $82.00 target price for the company in a research report on Wednesday, October 24th. Bank of America assumed coverage on shares of TransUnion in a research report on Tuesday, October 23rd. They issued a “buy” rating and a $84.00 target price for the company. Wells Fargo & Co boosted their target price on shares of TransUnion from $65.00 to $75.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 25th. Finally, Robert W. Baird boosted their target price on shares of TransUnion from $80.00 to $81.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 25th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company. TransUnion has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $78.54.

Shares of TransUnion stock opened at $60.47 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $12.01 billion, a PE ratio of 35.36, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.59 and a beta of 0.86. TransUnion has a 52-week low of $53.11 and a 52-week high of $79.48. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.07, a current ratio of 1.62 and a quick ratio of 1.62.

TransUnion (NYSE:TRU) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, October 23rd. The business services provider reported $0.65 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.63 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $603.60 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $617.92 million. TransUnion had a net margin of 18.98% and a return on equity of 21.22%. TransUnion’s quarterly revenue was up 21.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.49 earnings per share. As a group, analysts anticipate that TransUnion will post 2.24 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 6th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, November 21st will be given a $0.075 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 20th. This represents a $0.30 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.50%. TransUnion’s payout ratio is presently 17.54%.

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About TransUnion

TransUnion provides risk and information solutions. The company operates in three segments: U.S. Information Services (USIS), International, and Consumer Interactive. The USIS segment provides consumer reports, risk scores, and analytical and decisioning services for businesses. These businesses use its services to acquire new customers; assess consumer ability to pay for services; identify cross-selling opportunities; measure and manage debt portfolio risk; collect debt; verify consumer identities; and investigate potential fraud.

See Also: Initial Public Offering (IPO)

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