Willis Towers Watson (NASDAQ:WLTW) Upgraded to Buy by ValuEngine

ValuEngine upgraded shares of Willis Towers Watson (NASDAQ:WLTW) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Wednesday, ValuEngine reports.

Several other equities analysts have also recently weighed in on the company. Barclays lifted their price objective on Willis Towers Watson from $200.00 to $205.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a report on Wednesday, May 22nd. Morgan Stanley lifted their price objective on Willis Towers Watson from $180.00 to $190.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a report on Wednesday, May 15th. UBS Group lifted their price objective on Willis Towers Watson from $188.00 to $202.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, May 7th. Raymond James reiterated a strong-buy rating and set a $200.00 price objective on shares of Willis Towers Watson in a report on Monday, May 6th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co lifted their price objective on Willis Towers Watson from $164.00 to $175.00 and gave the company a market perform rating in a report on Thursday, May 2nd. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, nine have assigned a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $188.77.

NASDAQ:WLTW opened at $190.33 on Wednesday. Willis Towers Watson has a fifty-two week low of $134.50 and a fifty-two week high of $190.55. The company has a current ratio of 2.20, a quick ratio of 2.20 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.54. The stock has a market cap of $24.60 billion, a PE ratio of 19.56, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.65 and a beta of 0.81.

Willis Towers Watson (NASDAQ:WLTW) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 1st. The financial services provider reported $2.98 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.99 by ($0.01). Willis Towers Watson had a net margin of 8.99% and a return on equity of 12.89%. The business had revenue of $2.31 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.37 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $2.71 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.9% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, equities analysts expect that Willis Towers Watson will post 10.76 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 15th. Shareholders of record on Sunday, June 30th will be paid a $0.65 dividend. This represents a $2.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.37%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, June 27th. Willis Towers Watson’s payout ratio is 26.72%.

In other Willis Towers Watson news, Director Anna C. Catalano sold 1,110 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $180.35, for a total value of $200,188.50. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Insiders own 0.75% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in WLTW. First Hawaiian Bank lifted its stake in Willis Towers Watson by 5,000.0% in the 1st quarter. First Hawaiian Bank now owns 153 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $27,000 after acquiring an additional 150 shares in the last quarter. Investors Research Corp acquired a new position in shares of Willis Towers Watson during the 1st quarter worth approximately $27,000. Cresset Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Willis Towers Watson during the 1st quarter worth approximately $37,000. JOYN Advisors Inc. increased its position in shares of Willis Towers Watson by 91.9% during the 4th quarter. JOYN Advisors Inc. now owns 286 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $43,000 after purchasing an additional 137 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bessemer Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Willis Towers Watson by 86.2% during the 4th quarter. Bessemer Group Inc. now owns 324 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $49,000 after purchasing an additional 150 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 91.65% of the company’s stock.

About Willis Towers Watson

Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company operates as an advisory, broking, and solutions company worldwide. The company's Human Capital and Benefits segment offers actuarial support, plan design, and administrative services for traditional pension and retirement savings plans; plan management consulting, broking, and administration services for health and group benefit programs; and benefits outsourcing services.

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