Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF) by 31.5% during the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 72,083 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after buying an additional 17,257 shares during the period. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc.’s holdings in Synchrony Financial were worth $2,150,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
Other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Quadrature Capital Ltd raised its position in Synchrony Financial by 34.5% in the fourth quarter. Quadrature Capital Ltd now owns 44,242 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,605,000 after buying an additional 11,349 shares in the last quarter. Wealthfront Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Synchrony Financial during the fourth quarter valued at about $432,000. Hudson Bay Capital Management LP bought a new stake in shares of Synchrony Financial during the fourth quarter valued at about $2,354,000. Kentucky Retirement Systems bought a new stake in shares of Synchrony Financial during the fourth quarter valued at about $2,064,000. Finally, Kentucky Retirement Systems Insurance Trust Fund bought a new stake in shares of Synchrony Financial during the fourth quarter valued at about $921,000. 89.63% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Shares of Synchrony Financial (SYF) traded down 0.10% on Friday, hitting $30.07. 5,534,198 shares of the stock traded hands. Synchrony Financial has a 52-week low of $26.01 and a 52-week high of $38.06. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $29.95 and a 200 day moving average price of $31.55. The firm has a market cap of $23.92 billion, a PE ratio of 11.29 and a beta of 1.01.
Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF) last released its earnings results on Friday, July 21st. The financial services provider reported $0.61 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $3.64 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.59 billion. Synchrony Financial had a return on equity of 15.30% and a net margin of 13.84%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.58 EPS. On average, equities analysts forecast that Synchrony Financial will post $2.60 EPS for the current year.
Synchrony Financial declared that its board has initiated a share repurchase program on Thursday, May 18th that permits the company to buyback $1.64 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the financial services provider to reacquire up to 7.6% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, August 17th. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 7th were given a $0.15 dividend. This represents a $0.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.00%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, August 3rd. This is an increase from Synchrony Financial’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.13. Synchrony Financial’s dividend payout ratio is 22.64%.
A number of equities research analysts have weighed in on the stock. TheStreet lowered shares of Synchrony Financial from a “b” rating to a “c+” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 3rd. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Synchrony Financial from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, July 28th. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. restated a “hold” rating on shares of Synchrony Financial in a research report on Sunday, April 30th. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Synchrony Financial from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, June 2nd. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $40.00 target price on shares of Synchrony Financial in a research report on Friday, June 9th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating, seventeen have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $37.46.
In other Synchrony Financial news, Director Paget Leonard Alves acquired 2,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 24th. The shares were bought at an average price of $30.85 per share, with a total value of $61,700.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 8,521 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $262,872.85. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 0.03% of the company’s stock.
About Synchrony Financial
Synchrony Financial is a consumer financial services company. The Company provides a range of credit products through programs it has established with a group of national and regional retailers, local merchants, manufacturers, buying groups, industry associations and healthcare service providers. The Company’s revenue activities are managed through three sales platforms: Retail Card, Payment Solutions and CareCredit.
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