Willis Investment Counsel Raises Stake in American Express Company (AXP)

Willis Investment Counsel raised its stake in American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) by 49.3% during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The firm owned 95,780 shares of the payment services company’s stock after buying an additional 31,610 shares during the period. Willis Investment Counsel’s holdings in American Express Company were worth $7,095,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Several other large investors have also modified their holdings of AXP. FNY Partners Fund LP acquired a new stake in shares of American Express Company during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $111,000. Capital Guardian Trust Co. raised its position in American Express Company by 23.6% in the fourth quarter. Capital Guardian Trust Co. now owns 1,717 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $127,000 after buying an additional 328 shares during the last quarter. Motco raised its position in American Express Company by 31.6% in the third quarter. Motco now owns 1,815 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $116,000 after buying an additional 436 shares during the last quarter. Massey Quick & Co. LLC purchased a new position in American Express Company during the fourth quarter valued at $148,000. Finally, Advisory Services Network LLC raised its position in American Express Company by 10.4% in the third quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 2,140 shares of the payment services company’s stock valued at $137,000 after buying an additional 201 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 81.71% of the company’s stock.

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

American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) opened at 78.20 on Monday. The firm has a market capitalization of $70.48 billion, a P/E ratio of 13.84 and a beta of 1.19. American Express Company has a 12-month low of $57.15 and a 12-month high of $82.00. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $79.17 and a 200 day moving average of $72.23.

American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, January 19th. The payment services company reported $0.91 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.98 by $0.07. American Express Company had a return on equity of 33.49% and a net margin of 16.63%. The firm earned $8 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $7.92 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.23 earnings per share. American Express Company’s revenue for the quarter was down 4.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts forecast that American Express Company will post $5.63 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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Several research analysts recently weighed in on AXP shares. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised shares of American Express Company from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and lifted their price objective for the stock from $76.00 to $90.00 in a research note on Tuesday, January 17th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods raised shares of American Express Company from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and lifted their price objective for the stock from $81.00 to $91.00 in a research note on Monday, January 30th. Credit Suisse Group AG reissued an “underperform” rating and set a $76.00 price objective on shares of American Express Company in a research note on Friday, January 20th. Pacific Crest reissued a “neutral” rating and set a $75.00 price objective on shares of American Express Company in a research note on Friday, December 23rd. Finally, Bank of America Corp lifted their price objective on shares of American Express Company from $75.86 to $98.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research note on Tuesday, January 10th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have assigned a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $75.98.

In related news, insider L Kevin Cox sold 32,726 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, February 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $77.93, for a total value of $2,550,337.18. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 50,463 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,932,581.59. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director John Joseph Brennan bought 4,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 22nd. The stock was purchased at an average price of $79.74 per share, for a total transaction of $318,960.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now owns 4,000 shares in the company, valued at $318,960. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 164,306 shares of company stock worth $12,814,347. 0.78% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

About American Express Company

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).

5 Day Chart for NYSE:AXP

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