First Trust Advisors LP Sells 49,307 Shares of American Express Company (NYSE:AXP)

First Trust Advisors LP cut its holdings in American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) by 31.2% during the third quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 108,645 shares of the payment services company’s stock after selling 49,307 shares during the quarter. First Trust Advisors LP’s holdings in American Express were worth $9,828,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other large investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of American Express by 1.5% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 50,233,957 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $4,231,710,000 after acquiring an additional 731,428 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of American Express by 1.1% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 44,685,897 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $3,764,339,000 after acquiring an additional 508,030 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp boosted its holdings in shares of American Express by 1.8% during the 1st quarter. State Street Corp now owns 40,399,620 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $3,196,011,000 after acquiring an additional 731,315 shares during the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP lifted its stake in shares of American Express by 21.7% in the 1st quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 17,198,787 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $1,360,596,000 after purchasing an additional 3,071,573 shares during the period. Finally, First Eagle Investment Management LLC lifted its stake in shares of American Express by 0.6% in the 2nd quarter. First Eagle Investment Management LLC now owns 16,342,822 shares of the payment services company’s stock worth $1,376,719,000 after purchasing an additional 103,546 shares during the period. 83.35% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Several brokerages have recently weighed in on AXP. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $116.00 price objective on shares of American Express in a research note on Friday, December 22nd. Bank of America set a $128.00 target price on shares of American Express and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, December 18th. ValuEngine cut shares of American Express from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, December 1st. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of American Express from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $107.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. Finally, Atlantic Securities raised shares of American Express from an “underweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $100.00 price objective for the company in a report on Tuesday, October 24th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have assigned a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $94.04.

In related news, CEO Kenneth I. Chenault sold 96,440 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, December 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $97.30, for a total value of $9,383,612.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 1,178,333 shares in the company, valued at $114,651,800.90. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, insider Anre D. Williams sold 30,761 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, October 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $93.41, for a total value of $2,873,385.01. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 28,720 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,682,735.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 440,310 shares of company stock worth $42,478,329 in the last 90 days. Insiders own 0.67% of the company’s stock.

American Express Company (AXP) traded down $0.39 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $99.31. The company had a trading volume of 2,056,268 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,149,550. The company has a market capitalization of $86,539.22, a P/E ratio of 19.13, a P/E/G ratio of 1.66 and a beta of 1.22. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.31, a current ratio of 1.90 and a quick ratio of 1.90. American Express Company has a 12-month low of $73.50 and a 12-month high of $100.53.

American Express (NYSE:AXP) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, October 18th. The payment services company reported $1.50 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.47 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $8.44 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $8.31 billion. American Express had a net margin of 14.48% and a return on equity of 22.73%. The firm’s revenue was up 8.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.24 earnings per share. analysts predict that American Express Company will post 5.86 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, February 9th. Stockholders of record on Friday, January 5th will be paid a dividend of $0.35 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, January 4th. This represents a $1.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.41%. American Express’s payout ratio is 26.97%.

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American Express Company Profile

American Express Company, together with its subsidiaries, is a global services company. The Company’s principal products and services are charge and credit card products, and travel-related services, which are offered to consumers and businesses around the world. Its segments include the U.S. Consumer Services (USCS), International Consumer and Network Services (ICNS), Global Commercial Services (GCS) and Global Merchant Services (GMS).

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

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