Sterling Capital Management LLC lowered its position in shares of Accenture PLC (NYSE:ACN) by 4.8% in the third quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 765,065 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock after selling 38,870 shares during the period. Accenture makes up approximately 1.0% of Sterling Capital Management LLC’s portfolio, making the stock its 18th largest position. Sterling Capital Management LLC owned about 0.12% of Accenture worth $103,337,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Eagle Ridge Investment Management purchased a new position in shares of Accenture during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $359,000. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board boosted its position in shares of Accenture by 18.9% during the 2nd quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 473,257 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock worth $58,532,000 after purchasing an additional 75,100 shares during the period. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. boosted its position in shares of Accenture by 4.9% during the 2nd quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 2,087,814 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock worth $258,221,000 after purchasing an additional 97,760 shares during the period. Koch Industries Inc. boosted its position in shares of Accenture by 18,227.9% during the 2nd quarter. Koch Industries Inc. now owns 329,903 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock worth $327,000 after purchasing an additional 328,103 shares during the period. Finally, Retirement Systems of Alabama boosted its position in shares of Accenture by 0.3% during the 2nd quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 340,128 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock worth $42,067,000 after purchasing an additional 916 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.51% of the company’s stock.

Several equities analysts have commented on the stock. Robert W. Baird reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $155.00 price target on shares of Accenture in a research report on Thursday, December 7th. Cantor Fitzgerald reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $135.00 price target on shares of Accenture in a research report on Thursday, September 28th. KeyCorp reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $149.00 price target on shares of Accenture in a research report on Thursday, September 28th. BMO Capital Markets raised their price target on shares of Accenture from $130.00 to $140.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research report on Friday, September 29th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company raised their price target on shares of Accenture from $147.00 to $150.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, September 29th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating, fourteen have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $145.77.

Accenture PLC (ACN) traded up $1.41 on Wednesday, reaching $152.10. 2,318,300 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 2,112,973. Accenture PLC has a 12 month low of $112.31 and a 12 month high of $152.80. The stock has a market capitalization of $99,449.07, a P/E ratio of 25.50, a P/E/G ratio of 2.23 and a beta of 1.08.

Accenture (NYSE:ACN) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, September 28th. The information technology services provider reported $1.48 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.47 by $0.01. Accenture had a net margin of 9.37% and a return on equity of 42.65%. The company had revenue of $9.15 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.01 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.31 earnings per share. Accenture’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.8% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts anticipate that Accenture PLC will post 6.54 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a Semi-Annual dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, November 15th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, October 19th were paid a $1.33 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, October 18th. This represents a dividend yield of 1.97%. Accenture’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 48.90%.

In other news, insider Daniel T. London sold 637 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, October 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $136.03, for a total value of $86,651.11. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Pierre Nanterme sold 38,589 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $135.03, for a total transaction of $5,210,672.67. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 179,083 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $24,181,577.49. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 83,325 shares of company stock valued at $11,479,125 over the last 90 days. Insiders own 0.21% of the company’s stock.

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About Accenture

Accenture plc is a professional services company serving clients in various industries and in geographic regions, including North America, Europe and Growth Markets. The Company provides management and technology consulting services. Its segments include Communications, Media and Technology; Financial Services; Health and Public Service; Products, and Resources.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Accenture (NYSE:ACN)

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