Zacks Investment Research Lowers Global Payments (GPN) to Sell

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Global Payments (NYSE:GPN) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report issued on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Global Payments’ shares have declined in a year's time, comparing unfavorably against its industry’s growth in the same timeframe. The company suffers from a rising debt level. Moreover, its earnings are also expected to face currency volatility, owing to its worldwide presence. However, strategic investments in future growth-driving projects and successful refinancing of credit facilities bode well in the long haul. Consistent top-line growth and its accretive acquisitions are impressive as well. Investment in technology has enabled it to stay ahead of the rapidly changing payments industry.”

A number of other equities analysts have also weighed in on GPN. Deutsche Bank boosted their price objective on Global Payments to $140.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Friday, September 14th. BMO Capital Markets initiated coverage on Global Payments in a research note on Wednesday, September 26th. They set an outperform rating and a $139.00 price objective on the stock. Robert W. Baird boosted their price objective on Global Payments from $136.00 to $142.00 and gave the stock an outperform rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 17th. KeyCorp upped their price target on Global Payments from $130.00 to $135.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 31st. Finally, Cantor Fitzgerald upped their price target on Global Payments from $136.00 to $143.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 31st. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and sixteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $125.70.

Shares of GPN traded up $0.54 during trading hours on Wednesday, hitting $110.79. 1,334,461 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,415,050. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.13, a quick ratio of 1.03 and a current ratio of 1.03. Global Payments has a 12-month low of $94.81 and a 12-month high of $129.25. The stock has a market capitalization of $17.28 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 27.63, a PEG ratio of 1.07 and a beta of 1.14.

Global Payments (NYSE:GPN) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 30th. The business services provider reported $1.44 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.39 by $0.05. Global Payments had a return on equity of 18.38% and a net margin of 17.48%. The firm had revenue of $857.70 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.02 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.15 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 17.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that Global Payments will post 4.89 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 28th. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 14th were issued a dividend of $0.01 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, December 13th. This represents a $0.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.04%. Global Payments’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 1.00%.

In other Global Payments news, Director Alan M. Silberstein sold 700 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $109.66, for a total transaction of $76,762.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 42,169 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,624,252.54. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Robert H. B. Baldwin, Jr. sold 3,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $102.02, for a total value of $306,060.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 74,899 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,641,195.98. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 6,825 shares of company stock worth $745,541. 0.98% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. TRUE Private Wealth Advisors purchased a new position in Global Payments during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $112,000. First Hawaiian Bank purchased a new position in Global Payments during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $124,000. CENTRAL TRUST Co grew its stake in Global Payments by 10.2% during the 4th quarter. CENTRAL TRUST Co now owns 1,597 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $165,000 after buying an additional 148 shares during the last quarter. Evercore Wealth Management LLC purchased a new position in Global Payments during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $201,000. Finally, Equitable Trust Co. purchased a new position in Global Payments during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $204,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 97.29% of the company’s stock.

Global Payments Company Profile

Global Payments Inc provides payment technology and software solutions for credit cards, debit cards, electronic payments, and check-related services. It offers authorization services, settlement and funding services, customer support and help-desk functions, chargeback resolution, terminal rental, sales and deployment, payment security services, consolidated billing and statements, online reporting, industry compliance, and payment card industry security services.

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