Equifax (NYSE:EFX) Shares Gap Down on Analyst Downgrade

Equifax Inc. (NYSE:EFXGet Rating)’s stock price gapped down before the market opened on Thursday after Morgan Stanley lowered their price target on the stock from $274.00 to $250.00. The stock had previously closed at $221.41, but opened at $204.44. Morgan Stanley currently has an overweight rating on the stock. Equifax shares last traded at $210.73, with a volume of 15,210 shares trading hands.

Several other analysts also recently weighed in on the stock. Barclays dropped their target price on shares of Equifax from $300.00 to $250.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a report on Friday. Needham & Company LLC lowered their price target on shares of Equifax from $335.00 to $275.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research note on Friday. StockNews.com assumed coverage on shares of Equifax in a research note on Thursday, March 31st. They set a “hold” rating on the stock. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Equifax from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $246.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Friday, February 11th. Finally, Bank of America assumed coverage on shares of Equifax in a report on Friday, March 11th. They issued a “neutral” rating on the stock. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Based on data from MarketBeat, the stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $260.54.

In other news, insider Sid Singh sold 19,222 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, February 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $215.93, for a total transaction of $4,150,606.46. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Insiders own 1.57% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Penserra Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in Equifax by 10.0% in the third quarter. Penserra Capital Management LLC now owns 439 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $111,000 after purchasing an additional 40 shares during the period. Checchi Capital Advisers LLC lifted its holdings in Equifax by 4.4% in the fourth quarter. Checchi Capital Advisers LLC now owns 1,089 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $319,000 after purchasing an additional 46 shares during the period. Allworth Financial LP lifted its holdings in Equifax by 2.0% in the third quarter. Allworth Financial LP now owns 2,549 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $646,000 after purchasing an additional 49 shares during the period. Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria S.A. lifted its holdings in Equifax by 1.9% in the third quarter. Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria S.A. now owns 2,986 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $757,000 after purchasing an additional 56 shares during the period. Finally, First Horizon Advisors Inc. lifted its holdings in Equifax by 53.3% in the fourth quarter. First Horizon Advisors Inc. now owns 161 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $47,000 after purchasing an additional 56 shares during the period. 91.48% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.24, a current ratio of 0.49 and a quick ratio of 0.49. The firm’s fifty day moving average is $225.01 and its two-hundred day moving average is $253.47. The firm has a market cap of $25.02 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 33.76, a P/E/G ratio of 1.64 and a beta of 1.50.

Equifax (NYSE:EFXGet Rating) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, April 20th. The credit services provider reported $2.22 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $2.14 by $0.08. The business had revenue of $1.36 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.32 billion. Equifax had a net margin of 15.11% and a return on equity of 26.95%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 12.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $1.97 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts forecast that Equifax Inc. will post 8.74 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, March 15th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, February 22nd were given a $0.39 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, February 18th. This represents a $1.56 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.77%. Equifax’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 25.87%.

Equifax Company Profile (NYSE:EFX)

Equifax Inc provides information solutions and human resources business process automation outsourcing services for businesses, governments, and consumers. The company operates through three segments: Workforce Solutions, U.S. Information Solutions (USIS), and International. The Workforce Solutions segment offers employment, income, criminal history, and social security number verification services, as well as payroll-based transaction, employment tax management, and identity theft protection products.

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