Brokers expect The Western Union Company (NYSE:WU) to post earnings per share (EPS) of $0.53 for the current quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Five analysts provided estimates of Western Union earnings. The lowest EPS estimate is $0.51 and the highest is $0.54. Western Union reported earnings of $0.45 per share in the same quarter last year, suggesting a positive year-over-year growth rate of 17.8%. The company is expected to announce its next results after the market closes on Thursday, February 10.
On average, analysts expect Western Union to report annual earnings of $2.08 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $2.06 to $2.09. For the next fiscal year, analysts expect the company to report earnings of $2.25 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $2.15 to $2.33. Zacks earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of research analysts who provide coverage for Western Union.
Western Union (NYSE:WU) last released its results on Monday, November 1. The credit services provider reported EPS of $0.63 for the quarter, beating analyst consensus estimates of $0.58 by $0.05. The company posted revenue of $1.29 billion in the quarter, versus a consensus estimate of $1.31 billion. Western Union had a net margin of 16.10% and a return on equity of 311.01%. In the same quarter a year earlier, the company posted earnings per share of $0.57.
A number of brokerages have recently commented on WU. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft lowered its price target on Western Union shares from $25.00 to $18.00 and set a “holding” rating for the company in a Wednesday, Nov. 3 research note. Royal Bank of Canada lowered its price target on Western Union shares from $27.00 to $23.00 and set an “industry performance” rating for the company in a Wednesday, Nov. 3 research note . Susquehanna Bancshares cut its price target on Western Union shares from $23.00 to $21.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a Wednesday, Nov. 3 research note. BTIG Research downgraded Western Union shares from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a Wednesday, October 20 research rating. Finally, Northland Securities lowered its price target on Western Union shares from $32.00 to $25.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a Wednesday, Nov. 3 research note. Four analysts gave the stock a sell rating, seven gave the company a hold rating and two gave the company a buy rating. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $22.25.
Institutional investors have recently changed their stake in the company. Denali Advisors LLC bought a new position in Western Union in the fourth quarter worth about $25,000. NEXT Financial Group Inc increased its stake in Western Union to 83.5% in the third quarter. NEXT Financial Group Inc now owns 2,110 shares of the credit service provider valued at $42,000 after buying an additional 960 shares last quarter. Spire Wealth Management bought a new position in Western Union in the fourth quarter worth about $42,000. Carroll Financial Associates Inc. increased its stake in Western Union by 3,208.6% in the fourth quarter. Carroll Financial Associates Inc. now owns 2,680 shares of the credit service provider valued at $47,000 after buying 2,599 additional shares last quarter. Finally, Allworth Financial LP increased its stake in Western Union by 297.3% in the fourth quarter. Allworth Financial LP now owns 2,678 shares of the credit service provider valued at $48,000 after buying 2,004 additional shares last quarter. 98.87% of the shares are held by institutional investors.
Shares of WU rose $0.64 on Friday, hitting $18.84. 6,169,796 shares were traded, against an average volume of 6,360,542. The company has a current ratio of 0.93, a quick ratio of 0.93 and a debt ratio of 7.74. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $17.80 and its 200-day moving average price is $19.86. The company has a market capitalization of $7.57 billion, a price-earnings ratio of 9.52 and a beta of 0.95. Western Union has a 12-month low of $15.69 and a 12-month high of $26.61.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 31. Investors of record on Friday, December 17 received a dividend of $0.235 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, December 16. This represents an annualized dividend of $0.94 and a yield of 4.99%. Western Union’s dividend payout ratio is currently 47.47%.
About Western Union
The Western Union Co is a holding company that provides money transfer and payment services. It operates through the following segments: Consumer-to-Consumer; Business solutions; and other. The Consumer-to-Consumer segment facilitates money transfers between two consumers. The Business Solutions segment offers payment and foreign exchange solutions, cross-border and multi-currency transactions, for small and medium enterprises and other organizations and individuals.
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