Guidant Wealth Advisors lifted its holdings in shares of American Express (NYSE:AXP) by 280.7% during the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 807 shares of the payment services company’s stock after acquiring an additional 595 shares during the period. Guidant Wealth Advisors’ holdings in American Express were worth $150,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other institutional investors and hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. BlackRock Inc. grew its position in shares of American Express by 1.0% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 43,504,697 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $4,058,115,000 after acquiring an additional 414,196 shares during the last quarter. Veritas Asset Management LLP grew its position in shares of American Express by 9.0% during the first quarter. Veritas Asset Management LLP now owns 11,996,953 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $1,119,076,000 after acquiring an additional 992,800 shares during the last quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC grew its position in shares of American Express by 3.7% during the second quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 10,110,872 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $990,866,000 after acquiring an additional 360,596 shares during the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. grew its position in shares of American Express by 11.5% during the first quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 5,239,962 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $488,784,000 after acquiring an additional 539,681 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Artisan Partners Limited Partnership grew its position in shares of American Express by 3.7% during the first quarter. Artisan Partners Limited Partnership now owns 4,964,107 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $463,052,000 after acquiring an additional 177,519 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 82.84% of the company’s stock.

A number of equities analysts have recently issued reports on AXP shares. ValuEngine lowered shares of American Express from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, March 23rd. TheStreet upgraded shares of American Express from a “c+” rating to a “b+” rating in a research report on Wednesday, April 18th. UBS Group started coverage on shares of American Express in a research report on Tuesday, March 27th. They set a “buy” rating and a $111.00 target price on the stock. Oppenheimer set a $117.00 target price on shares of American Express and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, March 13th. Finally, William Blair reiterated an “outperform” rating on shares of American Express in a research report on Friday, March 16th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and thirteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $107.49.

American Express traded up $0.39, reaching $100.30, during midday trading on Wednesday, MarketBeat reports. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 3,461,913 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,802,271. American Express has a fifty-two week low of $83.33 and a fifty-two week high of $103.24. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.67, a quick ratio of 1.90 and a current ratio of 1.90. The company has a market cap of $85.96 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.15, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.35 and a beta of 1.10.

American Express (NYSE:AXP) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, April 18th. The payment services company reported $1.86 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.71 by $0.15. American Express had a return on equity of 28.41% and a net margin of 8.79%. The company had revenue of $9.72 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.49 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.34 earnings per share. American Express’s quarterly revenue was up 11.6% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts predict that American Express will post 7.23 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, August 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, July 6th will be issued a $0.35 dividend. This represents a $1.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.40%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, July 5th. American Express’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 23.85%.

American Express declared that its board has initiated a stock repurchase program on Thursday, June 28th that permits the company to buyback $3.40 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the payment services company to reacquire up to 4.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

In other news, CFO Jeffrey C. Campbell sold 9,000 shares of American Express stock in a transaction on Friday, June 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $98.79, for a total transaction of $889,110.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 70,986 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $7,012,706.94. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, EVP Richard Petrino sold 9,880 shares of American Express stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $102.89, for a total value of $1,016,553.20. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 16,198 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,666,612.22. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 80,936 shares of company stock valued at $8,082,400. 0.20% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

American Express Company Profile

American Express Company, together with its subsidiaries, provides charge and credit payment card products and travel-related services to consumers and businesses worldwide. It operates through four segments: U.S. Consumer Services, International Consumer and Network Services, Global Commercial Services, and Global Merchant Services.

Want to see what other hedge funds are holding AXP? Visit HoldingsChannel.com to get the latest 13F filings and insider trades for American Express (NYSE:AXP).

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for American Express (NYSE:AXP)

Receive News & Ratings for American Express Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for American Express and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.