Trade Report: Today, The Zacks Investment Research lowers the Stock rating of MSCI Inc. (MSCI)

Today, The Zacks Investment Research lowers the Stock rating of MSCI Inc. (MSCI)

MSCI Inc. (NYSE:MSCI) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Saturday.

According to Zacks, “MSCI Inc. is a leading provider of investment decision support tools to investment institutions worldwide. MSCI Inc. products include indices and portfolio analytics for use in managing equity, fixed income and multi-asset class portfolios. “

Several other research analysts have also issued reports on MSCI. Credit Suisse Group AG restated a “buy” rating and set a $88.00 price target on shares of MSCI in a report on Friday, July 29th. Cantor Fitzgerald restated a “buy” rating on shares of MSCI in a report on Friday, August 19th. Finally, Evercore ISI lowered shares of MSCI from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and lowered their price target for the stock from $81.00 to $75.00 in a report on Tuesday, October 11th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $82.17.

MSCI (NYSE:MSCI) opened at 80.78 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $7.60 billion, a PE ratio of 31.75 and a beta of 1.00. MSCI has a one year low of $62.17 and a one year high of $90.79. The company’s 50-day moving average is $80.85 and its 200 day moving average is $81.59.

MSCI (NYSE:MSCI) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 27th. The company reported $0.77 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.73 by $0.04. MSCI had a net margin of 22.29% and a return on equity of 43.72%. The firm earned $288.43 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $288.96 million. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $0.60 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 7.3% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts anticipate that MSCI will post $2.96 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, November 30th. Stockholders of record on Monday, November 14th will be paid a $0.28 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 9th. This represents a $1.12 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.39%. MSCI’s dividend payout ratio is currently 44.09%.

In related news, insider Valueact Capital Master Fund, sold 450,000 shares of MSCI stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $88.17, for a total value of $39,676,500.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, COO Cd Baer Pettit sold 2,087 shares of MSCI stock in a transaction on Monday, November 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.50, for a total transaction of $168,003.50. Following the completion of the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 201,783 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $16,243,531.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 2.07% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. FMR LLC increased its stake in MSCI by 24.5% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 12,602,373 shares of the company’s stock valued at $971,896,000 after buying an additional 2,479,831 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in MSCI by 4.0% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 7,829,876 shares of the company’s stock valued at $603,840,000 after buying an additional 299,281 shares during the last quarter. Janus Capital Management LLC increased its stake in MSCI by 4.2% in the second quarter. Janus Capital Management LLC now owns 4,245,866 shares of the company’s stock valued at $327,441,000 after buying an additional 170,092 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors increased its stake in MSCI by 11.7% in the third quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 3,564,649 shares of the company’s stock valued at $299,217,000 after buying an additional 372,995 shares during the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. increased its stake in MSCI by 3.7% in the third quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 2,972,680 shares of the company’s stock valued at $249,527,000 after buying an additional 106,129 shares during the last quarter. 97.07% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About MSCI

MSCI Inc (MSCI), together with its subsidiaries, offers content, applications and services to support the needs of institutional investors throughout their investment processes. The Company’s operating segment includes Index, Analytics and All Other segment. All Other segment comprises ESG and Real Estate segments.

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