Equities analysts expect that Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) will post $973.10 million in sales for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks reports. Three analysts have issued estimates for Moody’s Corporation’s earnings, with estimates ranging from $940.20 million to $1.01 billion. Moody’s Corporation reported sales of $917.10 million in the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year-over-year growth rate of 6.1%. The company is expected to issue its next earnings report on Friday, October 20th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Moody’s Corporation will report full year sales of $973.10 million for the current year, with estimates ranging from $3.90 billion to $4.06 billion. For the next year, analysts forecast that the firm will report sales of $4.42 billion per share, with estimates ranging from $4.41 billion to $4.42 billion. Zacks’ sales averages are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side analysts that follow Moody’s Corporation.

Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 21st. The business services provider reported $1.51 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.33 by $0.18. Moody’s Corporation had a net margin of 12.63% and a negative return on equity of 167.31%. The company had revenue of $1 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $968.78 million. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.30 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 7.7% compared to the same quarter last year.

A number of research analysts recently commented on MCO shares. Barclays PLC restated a “hold” rating and set a $118.00 price objective on shares of Moody’s Corporation in a research note on Thursday, April 27th. Morgan Stanley upped their price objective on Moody’s Corporation from $117.00 to $118.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Friday, April 28th. Cantor Fitzgerald restated a “hold” rating and set a $116.00 price objective on shares of Moody’s Corporation in a research note on Monday, May 8th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Moody’s Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, June 19th. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded Moody’s Corporation from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 22nd. Six investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, one has assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $129.29.

In other news, insider Raymond W. Mcdaniel sold 45,216 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $129.03, for a total value of $5,834,220.48. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 292,310 shares in the company, valued at $37,716,759.30. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, Director Darrell Duffie sold 500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, June 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $121.64, for a total value of $60,820.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 22,268 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,708,679.52. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 184,777 shares of company stock valued at $22,642,272. Company insiders own 1.17% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in MCO. Allen Investment Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 11.3% in the first quarter. Allen Investment Management LLC now owns 788,544 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $88,348,000 after buying an additional 80,012 shares during the period. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 6.4% in the first quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 523,807 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $58,688,000 after buying an additional 31,365 shares during the period. Schwartz Investment Counsel Inc. raised its stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 20.7% in the first quarter. Schwartz Investment Counsel Inc. now owns 446,600 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $50,037,000 after buying an additional 76,600 shares during the period. State Treasurer State of Michigan raised its stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation by 4.2% in the second quarter. State Treasurer State of Michigan now owns 159,015 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $19,349,000 after buying an additional 6,400 shares during the period. Finally, BLS Capital Fondsmaeglerselskab A S purchased a new stake in shares of Moody’s Corporation during the fourth quarter valued at $23,947,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 88.46% of the company’s stock.

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Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) traded up 0.32% during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $132.62. 70,791 shares of the stock were exchanged. Moody’s Corporation has a 52 week low of $93.51 and a 52 week high of $135.20. The company has a 50-day moving average of $128.88 and a 200-day moving average of $118.59. The stock has a market capitalization of $25.34 billion, a PE ratio of 53.28 and a beta of 1.29.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 12th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, August 22nd will be paid a $0.38 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, August 18th. This represents a $1.52 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.15%. Moody’s Corporation’s payout ratio is 61.29%.

About Moody’s Corporation

Moody’s Corporation (Moody’s) is a provider of credit ratings; credit, capital markets and economic related research, data and analytical tools; software solutions and related risk management services, quantitative credit risk measures, financial services training and certification services, and research and analytical services to financial institution customers.

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