Virtu Financial (NASDAQ:VIRT) Stock Price Up 6.9% on Analyst Upgrade

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Virtu Financial, Inc. (NASDAQ:VIRT) shares traded up 6.9% during mid-day trading on Tuesday after Morgan Stanley raised their price target on the stock from $24.00 to $25.00. Morgan Stanley currently has an underweight rating on the stock. Virtu Financial traded as high as $29.17 and last traded at $29.13. 2,557,273 shares traded hands during trading, an increase of 40% from the average session volume of 1,821,712 shares. The stock had previously closed at $27.26.

Separately, Rosenblatt Securities boosted their price target on shares of Virtu Financial from $28.00 to $32.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $26.90.

A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC raised its stake in Virtu Financial by 3.4% during the fourth quarter. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC now owns 12,595 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $317,000 after acquiring an additional 417 shares in the last quarter. CIBC World Markets Inc. raised its stake in shares of Virtu Financial by 3.7% in the fourth quarter. CIBC World Markets Inc. now owns 12,408 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $312,000 after acquiring an additional 448 shares during the last quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Virtu Financial by 2.9% in the 3rd quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 21,352 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $491,000 after acquiring an additional 608 shares in the last quarter. Mercer Capital Advisers Inc. grew its position in Virtu Financial by 12.8% during the 4th quarter. Mercer Capital Advisers Inc. now owns 8,175 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $206,000 after acquiring an additional 925 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Boston Partners increased its holdings in Virtu Financial by 1.4% during the 4th quarter. Boston Partners now owns 67,597 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,701,000 after purchasing an additional 944 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 58.27% of the company’s stock.

The stock has a market cap of $5.64 billion, a P/E ratio of 6.57 and a beta of -0.26. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.91, a quick ratio of 0.75 and a current ratio of 0.75. The company has a 50-day simple moving average of $26.05 and a 200-day simple moving average of $24.46.

Virtu Financial (NASDAQ:VIRT) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 11th. The financial services provider reported $1.18 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.81 by $0.37. Virtu Financial had a return on equity of 52.12% and a net margin of 17.49%. As a group, sell-side analysts expect that Virtu Financial, Inc. will post 5.21 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, March 15th. Shareholders of record on Monday, March 1st will be paid a $0.24 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, February 26th. This represents a $0.96 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.30%. Virtu Financial’s payout ratio is presently 157.38%.

Virtu Financial Company Profile (NASDAQ:VIRT)

Virtu Financial, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides market making and liquidity services through its proprietary, multi-asset, and multi-currency technology platform to the financial markets worldwide. The company’s Market Making segment principally consists of market making in the cash, futures, and options markets across equities, options, fixed income, currencies, and commodities.

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