Traders Sell Shares of Morgan Stanley (MS) on Strength (MS)

Investors sold shares of Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) on strength during trading on Tuesday. $30.20 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $70.94 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $40.74 million out of the stock. Of all stocks tracked, Morgan Stanley had the 26th highest net out-flow for the day. Morgan Stanley traded up $0.11 for the day and closed at $49.49

A number of brokerages have commented on MS. HSBC Holdings plc set a $54.00 price target on shares of Morgan Stanley and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, August 11th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Morgan Stanley from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, July 24th. Macquarie reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $52.00 price target (up previously from $51.00) on shares of Morgan Stanley in a research report on Saturday, July 22nd. J P Morgan Chase & Co set a $53.00 price target on shares of Morgan Stanley and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, September 15th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets upped their price target on shares of Morgan Stanley from $58.00 to $61.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 20th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating, eighteen have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $49.39.

The company has a market capitalization of $90.89 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.18 and a beta of 1.61. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $46.97 and a 200 day moving average of $44.91.

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 19th. The financial services provider reported $0.87 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.76 by $0.11. Morgan Stanley had a net margin of 16.77% and a return on equity of 9.83%. The firm had revenue of $9.50 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $9.05 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.75 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 6.7% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Morgan Stanley will post $3.47 earnings per share for the current year.

Morgan Stanley announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback plan on Wednesday, June 28th that allows the company to buyback $5.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the financial services provider to purchase up to 6.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are typically an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

In other Morgan Stanley news, Chairman James P. Gorman sold 212,366 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.26, for a total transaction of $10,036,417.16. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 1,602,609 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $75,739,301.34. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, CFO Jonathan Pruzan sold 25,767 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, July 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $46.68, for a total transaction of $1,202,803.56. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 196,708 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $9,182,329.44. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.24% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Fulton Bank N.A. increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 4.3% in the third quarter. Fulton Bank N.A. now owns 25,454 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $1,226,000 after purchasing an additional 1,040 shares in the last quarter. Eqis Capital Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 12.3% in the third quarter. Eqis Capital Management Inc. now owns 11,112 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $535,000 after purchasing an additional 1,218 shares in the last quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 1.0% in the second quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC now owns 100,415 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $4,474,000 after purchasing an additional 959 shares in the last quarter. WFG Advisors LP increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 45.4% in the second quarter. WFG Advisors LP now owns 2,690 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $120,000 after purchasing an additional 840 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Toronto Dominion Bank increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 27.8% in the second quarter.

A number of brokerages have commented on MS. HSBC Holdings plc set a $54.00 price target on shares of Morgan Stanley and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, August 11th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Morgan Stanley from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, July 24th. Macquarie reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $52.00 price target (up previously from $51.00) on shares of Morgan Stanley in a research report on Saturday, July 22nd. J P Morgan Chase & Co set a $53.00 price target on shares of Morgan Stanley and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, September 15th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets upped their price target on shares of Morgan Stanley from $58.00 to $61.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 20th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating, eighteen have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $49.39.

The company has a market capitalization of $90.89 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.18 and a beta of 1.61. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $46.97 and a 200 day moving average of $44.91.

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 19th. The financial services provider reported $0.87 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.76 by $0.11. Morgan Stanley had a net margin of 16.77% and a return on equity of 9.83%. The firm had revenue of $9.50 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $9.05 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.75 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 6.7% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Morgan Stanley will post $3.47 earnings per share for the current year.

Morgan Stanley announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback plan on Wednesday, June 28th that allows the company to buyback $5.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the financial services provider to purchase up to 6.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are typically an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

In other Morgan Stanley news, Chairman James P. Gorman sold 212,366 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.26, for a total transaction of $10,036,417.16. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 1,602,609 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $75,739,301.34. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, CFO Jonathan Pruzan sold 25,767 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, July 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $46.68, for a total transaction of $1,202,803.56. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 196,708 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $9,182,329.44. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.24% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Fulton Bank N.A. increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 4.3% in the third quarter. Fulton Bank N.A. now owns 25,454 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $1,226,000 after purchasing an additional 1,040 shares in the last quarter. Eqis Capital Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 12.3% in the third quarter. Eqis Capital Management Inc. now owns 11,112 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $535,000 after purchasing an additional 1,218 shares in the last quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 1.0% in the second quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC now owns 100,415 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $4,474,000 after purchasing an additional 959 shares in the last quarter. WFG Advisors LP increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 45.4% in the second quarter. WFG Advisors LP now owns 2,690 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $120,000 after purchasing an additional 840 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Toronto Dominion Bank increased its stake in shares of Morgan Stanley by 27.8% in the second quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 503,991 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $22,455,000 after purchasing an additional 109,702 shares in the last quarter. 85.18% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley is a financial holding company. The Company’s segments include Institutional Securities, Wealth Management and Investment Management. The Company’s Institutional Securities business segment provides investment banking, sales and trading, and other services to corporations, governments, financial institutions and high-to-ultra high net worth clients.

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