Stewart Information Services Corp. (STC) shares fall following downgrade at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods

Stewart Information Services Corp. (NYSE: STC) shares fell on Tuesday Dec 13 with lower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a downgraded rating.

Meanwhile, the Dow DJIA, +0.47% climbed 106 points, or 0.6%, to 19,905. If the Dow finishes higher, it will notch its seventh straight gain.

The S&P 500 index SPX, +0.56% gained 10.45 points, or 0.5%, to 2,267 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +1.02% added 48 points, or 0.9%, to 5,461.

Both the S&P 500 index SPX, +0.56% and Nasdaq Composite COMP, +1.02% ended lower on Monday, with investors appearing reluctant to push shares higher ahead of the Fed meeting

Shares of Stewart Information Services Corp. (NYSE: STC) were downgraded by analysts at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods in a note to their investors today. With a rating of Underperform on the stock, Stewart Information Services Corp. has a 52-week high of $48.60. The one-year price target of $43.00 is less than the opening price of $43.01, causing a fair amount of other analysts to issue statements on the stock in recent days. Downgrades are more likely when analysts believe that the future prospects for the security have weakened from the initial recommendation, usually caused by a material and crucial digression in the company’s actions, future outlook or industry.

Stewart Information Services Corp. (NYSE: STC) shares last traded at $43.01, which is a dip of $1.05 per share or -2.38% from the previous closing price. Opening at $43.01, they ranged from $42.61 and $43.51 throughout the day.

Stewart Information Services Corp. (NYSE: STC) now has a market cap of 1.01B.

Stewart Information Services Corp. (NYSE: STC) Average Daily Trading Volume

The stock’s average daily volume is 195,544 shares out of a total float 17,432,000 and some 70,056 shares traded hands yesterday, below normal. Swing traders often use upticks in trading volume to pinpoint large volume aggregation or distribution by institutional investors, so look for trading volume to pick up in the coming days.

However, one day of high volume buy side trading is not enough to determine a trend. As such, market traders will continue to watch for institutional sponsorship as an indicator that financial institutions are moving forward.

Institutional sponsorship is defined by ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

Institutional investors such as these have teams of analysts that investigate thousands of stocks. Thus, watching their interests is a good way to ensure you are buying the right stocks.

Stewart Information Services Corp. (NYSE: STC) Moving Averages

A moving average can also act as support or resistance. In an uptrend a 50-day, 100-day or 200-day moving average may act as a support level, as shown in the figure below.

This is because the average acts like a floor (support), so the price bounces up off of it.

In a downtrend a moving average may act as resistance; like a ceiling, the price hits it and then starts to drop again.

By spotting trends, moving averages allow investors to make those trends work in their favor and increase the number of winning trades.

With that in mind, Stewart Information Services Corp. (NYSE: STC) now has a 50-day MA of $45.20 and 200-day MA of $43.96. It has traded in a 52-week range between $30.34 – 48.60 and today’s last price is 11.49%% lower than the 52 week high of $48.60.

Indeed, earnings growth is among the most critical things to look at in regards to stock investing and, accordingly, investors look for companies that have been successful at growing their earnings by at least 25% for 3 consecutive years.

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