Brokerages Set The Western Union Company (NYSE:WU) PT at $24.63

The Western Union Company (NYSE:WU) has earned a consensus recommendation of “Hold” from the sixteen brokerages that are presently covering the company, MarketBeat reports. Eight investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, six have given a hold recommendation and one has issued a buy recommendation on the company. The average twelve-month price objective among brokers that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $24.63.

WU has been the topic of a number of research reports. ValuEngine lowered The Western Union from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, January 10th. Citigroup set a $20.50 price objective on The Western Union and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, November 1st. Wolfe Research set a $24.00 price objective on The Western Union and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, November 1st. Guggenheim lowered The Western Union from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Tuesday, November 12th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, TheStreet lowered The Western Union from a “b” rating to a “c+” rating in a report on Thursday, October 31st.

NYSE:WU traded down $0.73 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $25.77. 12,413,127 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 6,837,879. The company has a fifty day moving average of $26.93 and a 200 day moving average of $25.13. The Western Union has a twelve month low of $17.52 and a twelve month high of $28.44. The company has a market capitalization of $11.11 billion, a P/E ratio of 10.52, a P/E/G ratio of 0.87 and a beta of 0.78. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 101.99, a quick ratio of 0.96 and a current ratio of 0.97.

The Western Union (NYSE:WU) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, February 11th. The credit services provider reported $0.38 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.43 by ($0.05). The Western Union had a net margin of 20.00% and a negative return on equity of 737.30%. The business had revenue of $1.31 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.32 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.49 earnings per share. On average, research analysts expect that The Western Union will post 1.99 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, March 31st. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, March 17th will be paid a $0.225 dividend. This is an increase from The Western Union’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.20. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, March 16th. This represents a $0.90 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.49%. The Western Union’s dividend payout ratio is presently 46.24%.

In related news, Director Jan Siegmund bought 10,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 14th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $26.21 per share, for a total transaction of $262,100.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now directly owns 10,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $262,100. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Roberto G. Mendoza sold 26,504 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $26.94, for a total value of $714,017.76. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 94,334 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,541,357.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 53,474 shares of company stock worth $1,440,420 in the last 90 days. Company insiders own 1.33% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Pinnacle Financial Partners Inc. purchased a new position in The Western Union during the fourth quarter worth approximately $26,000. Procyon Private Wealth Partners LLC purchased a new position in The Western Union during the fourth quarter worth approximately $48,000. CENTRAL TRUST Co boosted its position in The Western Union by 73.4% during the third quarter. CENTRAL TRUST Co now owns 2,244 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $52,000 after purchasing an additional 950 shares in the last quarter. American National Bank purchased a new position in The Western Union during the fourth quarter worth approximately $56,000. Finally, Quest Capital Management Inc. ADV purchased a new position in The Western Union during the third quarter worth approximately $62,000.

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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Analyst Recommendations for The Western Union (NYSE:WU)

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