Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report released on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Synchrony Financial’s shares have underperformed the industry year to date. The company has been witnessing a steep rise in its expenses since 2013. This continuous rise in expenses has severely weighed on its bottom line. Moreover, the company suffers from increasing allowance for loan losses that has been increasing due to the rapid growth in its loan portfolio. This is likely to impact the company’s risk profile adversely. In addition, the company also suffers from rising fraud-related losses due to its exposure to risk of fraudulent activities associated with partners, customers and third parties handling customer information. The company has seen its Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2018 earnings being revised downward in the last 30 days.”

Other research analysts have also issued reports about the stock. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reiterated a hold rating on shares of Synchrony Financial in a research report on Saturday, July 22nd. BidaskClub lowered shares of Synchrony Financial from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Friday, July 28th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Synchrony Financial from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, June 15th. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a buy rating and issued a $40.00 target price on shares of Synchrony Financial in a research report on Friday, June 9th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reiterated a buy rating on shares of Synchrony Financial in a research report on Friday, July 21st. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating, fourteen have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $37.61.

Shares of Synchrony Financial (SYF) opened at 30.94 on Monday. The firm has a market cap of $24.61 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.62 and a beta of 1.01. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $29.92 and its 200 day moving average price is $30.47. Synchrony Financial has a 12-month low of $26.01 and a 12-month high of $38.06.

Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF) last announced its earnings results on Friday, July 21st. The financial services provider reported $0.61 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.03. Synchrony Financial had a net margin of 13.84% and a return on equity of 15.30%. The company had revenue of $3.64 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.59 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $0.58 earnings per share. Equities research analysts forecast that Synchrony Financial will post $2.59 EPS for the current year.

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In related news, Director Paget Leonard Alves bought 2,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, July 24th. The shares were bought at an average price of $30.85 per share, for a total transaction of $61,700.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now owns 8,521 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $262,872.85. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. 0.03% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of SYF. Westside Investment Management Inc. boosted its holdings in Synchrony Financial by 32.1% in the second quarter. Westside Investment Management Inc. now owns 3,567 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $104,000 after purchasing an additional 867 shares during the last quarter. First Quadrant L P CA boosted its holdings in Synchrony Financial by 55.4% in the second quarter. First Quadrant L P CA now owns 3,726 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $111,000 after purchasing an additional 1,328 shares during the last quarter. Benjamin F. Edwards & Company Inc. boosted its holdings in Synchrony Financial by 39.0% in the second quarter. Benjamin F. Edwards & Company Inc. now owns 4,560 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $136,000 after purchasing an additional 1,280 shares during the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue boosted its holdings in Synchrony Financial by 19.7% in the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 5,338 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $159,000 after purchasing an additional 880 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. boosted its holdings in Synchrony Financial by 9.9% in the second quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 5,387 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $160,000 after purchasing an additional 486 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 87.05% of the company’s stock.

About Synchrony Financial

Synchrony Financial is a consumer financial services company. The Company provides a range of credit products through programs it has established with a group of national and regional retailers, local merchants, manufacturers, buying groups, industry associations and healthcare service providers. The Company’s revenue activities are managed through three sales platforms: Retail Card, Payment Solutions and CareCredit.

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