Paychex, Inc. (NASDAQ:PAYX)’s share price hit a new 52-week high on Wednesday after Bank of America raised their price target on the stock from $68.00 to $73.00. Bank of America currently has a buy rating on the stock. Paychex traded as high as $68.59 and last traded at $67.94, with a volume of 2878000 shares. The stock had previously closed at $67.61.

Several other equities research analysts have also recently commented on the stock. Royal Bank Of Canada reiterated a “sell” rating and set a $57.00 price target on shares of Paychex in a research report on Wednesday, November 15th. Morgan Stanley upgraded shares of Paychex from an “underweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and set a $55.00 price target for the company in a research report on Wednesday, August 16th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Citigroup reiterated a “sell” rating and set a $53.00 price target on shares of Paychex in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. Wells Fargo & Company lifted their price target on shares of Paychex from $58.00 to $60.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $61.00 price target on shares of Paychex in a research report on Friday, August 18th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Paychex has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $61.19.

In related news, VP John B. Gibson sold 6,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $63.70, for a total transaction of $382,200.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 21,758 shares in the company, valued at $1,385,984.60. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CEO Martin Mucci sold 29,786 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, October 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $63.17, for a total transaction of $1,881,581.62. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 94,395 shares of company stock valued at $5,914,383. Corporate insiders own 11.70% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in PAYX. Salem Investment Counselors Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Paychex by 0.6% in the second quarter. Salem Investment Counselors Inc. now owns 1,796 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $102,000 after buying an additional 11 shares during the period. Dupont Capital Management Corp acquired a new position in shares of Paychex in the second quarter valued at approximately $129,000. Sun Life Financial INC boosted its holdings in shares of Paychex by 23,260.0% in the second quarter. Sun Life Financial INC now owns 2,336 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $133,000 after buying an additional 2,326 shares during the period. San Francisco Sentry Investment Group CA acquired a new position in shares of Paychex in the second quarter valued at approximately $145,000. Finally, Bank of Nova Scotia Trust Co. acquired a new position in shares of Paychex in the third quarter valued at approximately $188,000. Institutional investors own 68.02% of the company’s stock.

The stock has a market cap of $24,294.25, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.78, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.66 and a beta of 0.99.

Paychex (NASDAQ:PAYX) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 3rd. The business services provider reported $0.62 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.60 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $816.80 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $816.34 million. Paychex had a net margin of 26.01% and a return on equity of 43.01%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 4.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.60 earnings per share. equities analysts predict that Paychex, Inc. will post 2.38 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, November 15th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, November 1st were issued a $0.50 dividend. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.94%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, October 31st. Paychex’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 87.34%.

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Paychex Company Profile

Paychex, Inc is a provider of integrated human capital management (HCM) solutions for payroll, human resource (HR), retirement and insurance services for small- to medium-sized businesses in the United States. The Company also has operations in Germany. The Company offers services, including Payroll processing, Human Resource Services, and Accounting and Financial Services.

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