Paychex Inc. (NASDAQ:PAYX) has earned a consensus recommendation of “Hold” from the fifteen brokerages that are covering the firm. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating on the company. The average 12 month price target among brokerages that have covered the stock in the last year is $53.09.

Several equities analysts have issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Paychex from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 6th. Sanford C. Bernstein upgraded Paychex to a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, July 11th. BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “market perform” rating and set a $58.00 target price (up previously from $55.00) on shares of Paychex in a research report on Tuesday, July 5th. Wedbush assumed coverage on Paychex in a research report on Thursday, September 8th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $65.00 target price on the stock. Finally, Argus reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $70.00 target price (up previously from $59.50) on shares of Paychex in a research report on Friday, July 1st.

In other Paychex news, VP Jennifer R. Vossler sold 12,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, July 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.05, for a total transaction of $732,600.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 41,359 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,524,966.95. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Joseph Doody sold 44,441 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, July 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $60.51, for a total value of $2,689,124.91. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 19,158 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,159,250.58. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 11.60% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of PAYX. GW&K Investment Management LLC raised its position in shares of Paychex by 6.5% in the second quarter. GW&K Investment Management LLC now owns 515,086 shares of the company’s stock worth $30,648,000 after buying an additional 31,217 shares in the last quarter. Sabal Trust CO raised its position in shares of Paychex by 1.7% in the second quarter. Sabal Trust CO now owns 432,155 shares of the company’s stock worth $25,713,000 after buying an additional 7,236 shares in the last quarter. UMB Bank N A MO raised its position in shares of Paychex by 3.3% in the second quarter. UMB Bank N A MO now owns 378,956 shares of the company’s stock worth $22,548,000 after buying an additional 11,964 shares in the last quarter. Adage Capital Partners GP L.L.C. acquired a new position in shares of Paychex during the first quarter worth $25,052,000. Finally, Shell Asset Management Co. raised its position in shares of Paychex by 0.4% in the second quarter. Shell Asset Management Co. now owns 247,375 shares of the company’s stock worth $14,719,000 after buying an additional 1,006 shares in the last quarter. 69.33% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Paychex (NASDAQ:PAYX) traded up 0.43% during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $56.27. The company had a trading volume of 461,200 shares. The stock has a market cap of $20.35 billion, a PE ratio of 26.67 and a beta of 0.87. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $59.18 and its 200-day moving average price is $56.69. Paychex has a 52-week low of $45.76 and a 52-week high of $61.87.

Paychex (NASDAQ:PAYX) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, September 28th. The company reported $0.60 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.57 by $0.03. Paychex had a return on equity of 40.10% and a net margin of 25.38%. The company had revenue of $785.50 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $782.80 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.52 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 8.6% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts expect that Paychex will post $2.22 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 22nd. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, November 1st will be paid a dividend of $0.46 per share. This represents a $1.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.28%. Paychex’s dividend payout ratio is presently 87.20%.

About Paychex

Paychex, Inc is a provider of integrated human capital management (HCM) solutions for payroll, human resource (HR), retirement and insurance services for small- to medium-sized businesses in the United States. The Company also has operations in Germany. The Company offers services, including Payroll processing, Human Resource Services, and Accounting and Financial Services.

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:PAYX

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