Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL decreased its holdings in shares of Moody’s Co. (NYSE:MCO) by 50.5% in the third quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 42,600 shares of the business services provider’s stock after selling 43,500 shares during the period. Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL’s holdings in Moody’s were worth $7,123,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also made changes to their positions in the business. Pinnacle Financial Partners Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Moody’s during the third quarter valued at approximately $129,000. Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC bought a new stake in shares of Moody’s during the second quarter valued at approximately $140,000. Stratos Wealth Partners LTD. bought a new stake in shares of Moody’s during the third quarter valued at approximately $161,000. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management bought a new stake in shares of Moody’s during the third quarter valued at approximately $192,000. Finally, United Asset Strategies Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Moody’s during the second quarter valued at approximately $201,000. 88.13% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of MCO stock opened at $153.50 on Friday. Moody’s Co. has a 12-month low of $139.11 and a 12-month high of $187.98. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 7.40, a quick ratio of 1.38 and a current ratio of 1.38. The company has a market capitalization of $29.40 billion, a P/E ratio of 25.29, a P/E/G ratio of 1.86 and a beta of 1.21.

Moody’s (NYSE:MCO) last issued its earnings results on Friday, October 26th. The business services provider reported $1.69 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.78 by ($0.09). Moody’s had a return on equity of 412.48% and a net margin of 23.85%. The company had revenue of $1.08 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.13 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $1.52 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.7% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities analysts predict that Moody’s Co. will post 7.55 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, December 12th. Investors of record on Wednesday, November 21st will be issued a $0.44 dividend. This represents a $1.76 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.15%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 20th. Moody’s’s dividend payout ratio is currently 29.00%.

Several equities research analysts recently weighed in on MCO shares. Morgan Stanley raised their price target on shares of Moody’s from $176.00 to $179.00 and gave the company a “$184.49” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 18th. William Blair reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Moody’s in a research report on Sunday, August 12th. Nomura reissued a “buy” rating and set a $193.00 price target on shares of Moody’s in a research report on Monday, July 30th. Stifel Nicolaus raised their price target on shares of Moody’s from $170.00 to $188.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, July 30th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Moody’s from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, July 20th. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $178.45.

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About Moody’s

Moody's Corporation provides credit ratings; and credit, capital markets, and economic related research, data, and analytical tools worldwide. It operates through two segments, Moody's Investors Service and Moody's Analytics. The Moody's Investors Service segment publishes credit ratings on various debt obligations and entities that issue such obligations comprising various corporate and governmental obligations, structured finance securities, and commercial paper programs.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Moody`s (NYSE:MCO)

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