Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Vantiv Inc. (NYSE:VNTV) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report released on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Vantiv, Inc. is an integrated payment processor engaged in providing advanced technology solutions for businesses and financial institutions. The Company operates in two segments: Merchant Services and Financial Institution Services. Vantiv offers acquiring and processing transactions, value-added services, merchant services and reporting for electronic payment transactions. It also provides card issuer processing, payment network processing, fraud protection, card production, prepaid program management, automated teller machine driving, network gateway and switching services. Vantiv, Inc. is headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio. “

Several other analysts have also issued reports on VNTV. Pacific Crest set a $62.00 price target on Vantiv and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Thursday, September 15th. Jefferies Group reissued a buy rating and set a $65.00 price target on shares of Vantiv in a report on Tuesday, September 13th. Wedbush initiated coverage on Vantiv in a report on Thursday, September 8th. They set a neutral rating and a $60.00 price target for the company. Susquehanna raised Vantiv from a negative rating to a neutral rating and boosted their price target for the company from $30.00 to $36.00 in a report on Thursday, August 25th. Finally, Nomura reissued a buy rating and set a $63.00 price target (up previously from $62.00) on shares of Vantiv in a report on Tuesday, August 2nd. Eleven research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fifteen have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $56.93.

Shares of Vantiv (NYSE:VNTV) traded up 1.13% during trading on Thursday, hitting $56.50. The company had a trading volume of 159,382 shares. The stock has a market capitalization of $8.80 billion, a P/E ratio of 46.89 and a beta of 0.59. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $54.87 and its 200-day moving average is $54.87. Vantiv has a 52 week low of $42.01 and a 52 week high of $59.62.

Vantiv (NYSE:VNTV) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.70 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.02. Vantiv had a return on equity of 36.56% and a net margin of 5.67%. The company earned $891 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $465.66 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.56 earnings per share. Vantiv’s revenue was up 13.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts anticipate that Vantiv will post $2.66 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Vantiv news, CEO Charles Drucker sold 4,635 shares of Vantiv stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $57.03, for a total transaction of $264,334.05. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 507,797 shares in the company, valued at approximately $28,959,662.91. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, COO Mark L. Heimbouch sold 15,000 shares of Vantiv stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.84, for a total value of $807,600.00. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 149,153 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $8,030,397.52. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.32% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Global X Management Co. LLC raised its position in Vantiv by 153.5% in the second quarter. Global X Management Co. LLC now owns 1,972 shares of the company’s stock worth $112,000 after buying an additional 1,194 shares during the last quarter. Robecosam AG raised its position in Vantiv by 68.9% in the second quarter. Robecosam AG now owns 2,500 shares of the company’s stock worth $138,000 after buying an additional 1,020 shares during the last quarter. Dividend Assets Capital LLC bought a new position in Vantiv during the second quarter worth $200,000. World Asset Management Inc bought a new position in Vantiv during the second quarter worth $214,000. Finally, Invictus RG raised its position in Vantiv by 4,421.4% in the second quarter. Invictus RG now owns 3,798 shares of the company’s stock worth $215,000 after buying an additional 3,714 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 80.57% of the company’s stock.

Vantiv Company Profile

Vantiv, Inc (Vantiv) is a holding company. The Company conducts its operations through its subsidiary, Vantiv Holding, LLC (Vantiv Holding). The Company is a payment processor, merchant acquirer and personal identification number (PIN) debit acquirer. The Company operates through two segments: Merchant Services and Financial Institution Services.

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