Commonwealth Equity Services LLC reduced its holdings of Synchrony Financial shares (NYSE: SYF – Get a rating) by 4.4% during the 1st quarter, according to its last Form 13F filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company held 40,910 shares of the financial services provider after selling 1,873 shares during the quarter. Commonwealth Equity Services LLC’s holdings in Synchrony Financial were worth $1,424,000 when it was last filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Other large investors have also recently increased or reduced their stake in the company. Qube Research & Technologies Ltd increased its stake in Synchrony Financial shares to 88.4% in Q4. Qube Research & Technologies Ltd now owns 294,194 shares of the financial services provider worth $13,648,000 after buying an additional 138,064 shares during the period. Duality Advisers LP bought a new stock position in Synchrony Financial in Q4 for a value of approximately $592,000. Arkadios Wealth Advisors increased its stake in Synchrony Financial shares by 27.4% in the 4th quarter. Arkadios Wealth Advisors now owns 4,904 shares of the financial services provider worth $227,000 after purchasing an additional 1,055 shares during the period. Empirical Finance LLC increased its equity stake in Synchrony Financial by 21.4% in Q4. Empirical Finance LLC now owns 8,569 shares of the financial services provider worth $398,000 after purchasing an additional 1,509 shares during the period. Finally, Boston Partners increased its stake in Synchrony Financial shares by 1.2% in the 4th quarter. Boston Partners now owns 6,589,292 shares of the financial services provider worth $305,694,000 after purchasing an additional 80,405 shares during the period. 98.26% of the shares are currently held by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Analyst upgrades and downgrades
A number of stock analysts have recently commented on the company. Stephens raised his price target on Synchrony Financial from $29.00 to $35.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a Tuesday, July 19 report. BMO Capital Markets raised its price target on Synchrony Financial from $49.00 to $52.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a Tuesday, April 19 report. TheStreet downgraded Synchrony Financial from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a Tuesday July 19 research note. Piper Sandler set a target price of $41.00 on Synchrony Financial in a Tuesday, July 19 research note. Finally, Credit Suisse Group raised its price target on Synchrony Financial from $46.00 to $47.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a Tuesday, July 19 research note. One investment analyst gave the stock a sell rating, four gave the company a hold rating and twelve gave the company a buy rating. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the stock currently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus target price of $45.76.
Synchrony Financial Trading up 0.1%
NYSE: SYF opened at $36.14 on Friday. The company has a quick ratio of 1.21, a current ratio of 1.21 and a debt ratio of 0.96. The company’s 50-day moving average is $31.54 and its two-hundred-day moving average is $35.99. Synchrony Financial has a 52-week low of $27.22 and a 52-week high of $52.49. The company has a market capitalization of $17.41 billion, a PE ratio of 5.28, a P/E/G ratio of 0.27 and a beta of 1.57.
Synchrony Financial (NYSE: SYF – Get a rating) last released its results on Monday, July 18. The financial services provider reported EPS of $1.60 for the quarter, beating analyst consensus estimates of $1.47 by $0.13. Synchrony Financial had a return on equity of 27.06% and a net margin of 22.76%. In the same quarter a year earlier, the company posted EPS of $2.12. On average, analysts predict that Synchrony Financial will post 5.72 EPS for the current year.
Synchrony Financial increases its dividend
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, August 11. Shareholders of record on Monday August 1 received a dividend of $0.23 per share. This represents a dividend of $0.92 on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.55%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, July 29. This is an increase from Synchrony Financial’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.22. Synchrony Financial’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 13.43%.
Synchrony Financial said its board approved a stock buyback program on Monday, April 18 that allows the company to repurchase $2.80 billion of outstanding stock. This repurchase authorization allows the financial services provider to purchase up to 13.6% of its shares through purchases on the open market. Stock buyback programs usually indicate that the management of the company believes that its stock is undervalued.
About Synchrony Financial
Synchrony Financial, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a consumer financial services company in the United States. It provides credit products, such as credit cards, commercial credit products and consumer installment loans. The company also offers private label credit cards, dual cards, co-branded and general purpose credit cards, short and long term installment loans and consumer banking products; and deposit products, including certificates of deposit, individual retirement accounts, money market accounts, and savings accounts for retail and commercial customers, as well as deposits through brokerage firms in third-party securities.
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