Morgan Stanley (MS) Earns “Sell” Rating from Compass Point
Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS)‘s stock had its “sell” rating restated by equities researchers at Compass Point in a research note issued to investors on Monday. They currently have a $38.00 price objective on the financial services provider’s stock, up from their previous price objective of $34.00. Compass Point’s target price points to a potential downside of 21.19% from the company’s previous close.
MS has been the subject of a number of other reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered Morgan Stanley from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 11th. ValuEngine lowered Morgan Stanley from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, September 1st. Instinet reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $50.00 price objective (down from $51.00) on shares of Morgan Stanley in a research report on Saturday, June 3rd. J P Morgan Chase & Co reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Morgan Stanley in a research report on Monday, May 29th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company began coverage on Morgan Stanley in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. They issued a “market perform” rating and a $48.00 price objective for the company. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating, seventeen have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $48.28.
Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, July 19th. The financial services provider reported $0.87 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.76 by $0.11. Morgan Stanley had a return on equity of 9.83% and a net margin of 16.77%. The company had revenue of $9.50 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $9.05 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.75 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 6.7% compared to the same quarter last year.
Morgan Stanley declared that its board has authorized a stock buyback plan on Wednesday, June 28th that allows the company to buyback $5.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the financial services provider to reacquire up to 6.1% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are often a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.
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In other Morgan Stanley news, Chairman James P. Gorman sold 212,366 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.26, for a total value of $10,036,417.16. Following the sale, the chairman now owns 1,602,609 shares in the company, valued at approximately $75,739,301.34. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CFO Jonathan Pruzan sold 25,767 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, July 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $46.68, for a total value of $1,202,803.56. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 196,708 shares in the company, valued at approximately $9,182,329.44. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.24% of the company’s stock.
A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Sentry Investment Management LLC lifted its stake in Morgan Stanley by 1.0% in the 2nd quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC now owns 100,415 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $4,474,000 after acquiring an additional 959 shares in the last quarter. WFG Advisors LP lifted its stake in Morgan Stanley by 45.4% in the 2nd quarter. WFG Advisors LP now owns 2,690 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $120,000 after acquiring an additional 840 shares in the last quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank lifted its stake in Morgan Stanley by 27.8% in the 2nd quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 503,991 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $22,455,000 after acquiring an additional 109,702 shares in the last quarter. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd bought a new stake in Morgan Stanley in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $714,000. Finally, Colony Group LLC bought a new stake in Morgan Stanley in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $212,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 85.18% of the company’s stock.
About Morgan Stanley
Morgan Stanley is a financial holding company. The Company’s segments include Institutional Securities, Wealth Management and Investment Management. The Company’s Institutional Securities business segment provides investment banking, sales and trading, and other services to corporations, governments, financial institutions and high-to-ultra high net worth clients.
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