Sandy Spring Bank Increases Position in American Express (NYSE:AXP)

Sandy Spring Bank lifted its holdings in shares of American Express (NYSE:AXP) by 0.3% during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 55,377 shares of the payment services company’s stock after acquiring an additional 167 shares during the quarter. Sandy Spring Bank’s holdings in American Express were worth $10,374,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of AXP. Moneta Group Investment Advisors LLC boosted its stake in American Express by 118,198.3% in the fourth quarter. Moneta Group Investment Advisors LLC now owns 13,732,068 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $2,028,913,000 after acquiring an additional 13,720,460 shares during the period. Norges Bank acquired a new position in American Express in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $911,554,000. Boston Partners acquired a new position in American Express in the third quarter valued at approximately $210,540,000. Alliancebernstein L.P. boosted its stake in American Express by 162.6% in the fourth quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 1,961,999 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $289,885,000 after acquiring an additional 1,214,731 shares during the period. Finally, CI Private Wealth LLC acquired a new position in American Express in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $124,325,000. 84.33% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

A number of brokerages have commented on AXP. UBS Group lifted their target price on American Express from $188.00 to $206.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Monday, January 29th. Oppenheimer reaffirmed an “outperform” rating on shares of American Express in a report on Friday, April 5th. Royal Bank of Canada lifted their price target on American Express from $220.00 to $226.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday, January 29th. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft assumed coverage on American Express in a report on Wednesday, January 10th. They set a “buy” rating and a $235.00 price target on the stock. Finally, Monness Crespi & Hardt raised American Express from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $245.00 price target on the stock in a report on Friday, April 5th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat.com, American Express presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $201.62.

View Our Latest Analysis on American Express

Insiders Place Their Bets

In other American Express news, CEO Stephen J. Squeri sold 69,356 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, February 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $213.02, for a total transaction of $14,774,215.12. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 122,158 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $26,022,097.16. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. In related news, insider Monique Herena sold 11,242 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, February 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $208.41, for a total value of $2,342,945.22. Following the sale, the insider now owns 13,874 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,891,480.34. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Stephen J. Squeri sold 69,356 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, February 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $213.02, for a total transaction of $14,774,215.12. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 122,158 shares in the company, valued at approximately $26,022,097.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 172,047 shares of company stock valued at $36,528,388 in the last quarter. Insiders own 0.12% of the company’s stock.

American Express Trading Up 0.3 %

Shares of NYSE:AXP opened at $218.20 on Friday. The stock has a market capitalization of $157.95 billion, a PE ratio of 19.46, a P/E/G ratio of 1.25 and a beta of 1.23. American Express has a 1 year low of $140.91 and a 1 year high of $231.69. The firm has a fifty day moving average price of $218.64 and a 200 day moving average price of $185.45. The company has a current ratio of 1.63, a quick ratio of 1.63 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.71.

American Express (NYSE:AXPGet Free Report) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, January 26th. The payment services company reported $2.62 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.64 by ($0.02). The business had revenue of $15.80 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $16 billion. American Express had a return on equity of 30.99% and a net margin of 13.84%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 11.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $2.07 earnings per share. Analysts expect that American Express will post 12.84 EPS for the current fiscal year.

American Express Cuts Dividend

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, April 5th will be given a dividend of $0.10 per share. This represents a $0.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.18%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, April 4th. American Express’s dividend payout ratio is 24.98%.

About American Express

(Free Report)

American Express Company, together with its subsidiaries, operates as integrated payments company in the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Africa, the Asia Pacific, Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, Canada, the Caribbean, and Internationally. It operates through four segments: U.S. Consumer Services, Commercial Services, International Card Services, and Global Merchant and Network Services.

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

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