First Data Corporation (NYSE:FDC) was the recipient of a significant growth in short interest in November. As of November 15th, there was short interest totalling 23,612,430 shares, a growth of 19.9% from the October 31st total of 19,687,441 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 6,674,398 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 3.5 days. Approximately 5.4% of the company’s stock are short sold.

In related news, insider Christopher M. Foskett sold 10,254 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, September 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $18.40, for a total transaction of $188,673.60. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 430,294 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $7,917,409.60. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider Andrew Gelb sold 7,473 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, November 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $17.12, for a total value of $127,937.76. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 417,652 shares in the company, valued at $7,150,202.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders have bought 25,200 shares of company stock valued at $423,964 and have sold 77,445 shares valued at $1,394,613. 6.30% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of FDC. American Century Companies Inc. raised its stake in First Data by 4,509.6% during the 2nd quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 4,545,711 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $82,732,000 after purchasing an additional 4,447,098 shares during the period. Prudential Financial Inc. raised its stake in First Data by 4.7% during the 2nd quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 1,270,900 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $23,131,000 after purchasing an additional 57,600 shares during the period. Russell Investments Group Ltd. raised its stake in First Data by 51.3% during the 2nd quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 159,661 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $2,905,000 after purchasing an additional 54,118 shares during the period. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA raised its stake in First Data by 55.0% during the 3rd quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 1,117,960 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $20,168,000 after purchasing an additional 396,859 shares during the period. Finally, Todd Asset Management LLC bought a new stake in First Data during the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $8,893,000. 49.07% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

FDC has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $21.00 price objective on shares of First Data in a research report on Thursday, August 24th. Zacks Investment Research raised First Data from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, October 27th. Piper Jaffray Companies reaffirmed an “overweight” rating and set a $23.00 price objective (up from $22.00) on shares of First Data in a research report on Thursday, August 10th. Barclays increased their price objective on First Data from $22.00 to $24.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 11th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed an “outperform” rating on shares of First Data in a research report on Tuesday, September 5th. Eight research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty-six have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. First Data has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $19.63.

First Data (FDC) opened at $16.29 on Friday. First Data has a 12-month low of $13.96 and a 12-month high of $19.23. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 3.58, a quick ratio of 1.02 and a current ratio of 1.02. The firm has a market capitalization of $15,040.00 and a PE ratio of 13.19.

First Data (NYSE:FDC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, October 30th. The business services provider reported $0.40 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.40. First Data had a return on equity of 26.60% and a net margin of 5.99%. The firm had revenue of $3.08 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.08 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.34 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 4.8% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts predict that First Data will post 1.29 earnings per share for the current year.

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About First Data

First Data Corporation is a provider of commerce-enabling technology and solutions for merchants, financial institutions and card issuers. The Company’s segments are Global Business Solutions (GBS), Global Financial Solutions (GFS), Network & Security Solutions (NSS), and Corporate. The GBS segment provides businesses of all sizes and types with a range of solutions at the point of sale, including merchant acquiring, e-commerce, mobile commerce, point-of-sale, and other business solutions.

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