Stock traders buy large volume of Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF) put options


Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF – Get Rating) was the recipient of unusually heavy options trading activity on Friday. Stock traders bought 36,682 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 587% from the typical volume of 5,339 put options.

Institutional investors weigh in on Synchrony Financial

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently changed their positions in the stock. BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in Synchrony Financial by 2.4% in Q1. BlackRock Inc. now owns 47,846,561 shares of the financial services provider valued at $1,665,537,000 after buying an additional 1,102,772 shares last quarter. State Street Corp increased its stake in Synchrony Financial by 1.2% in the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 26,545,656 shares of the financial services provider valued at $1,231,453,000 after purchasing an additional 313,449 shares last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its stake in Synchrony Financial by 6.3% in the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 11,682,675 shares of the financial services provider valued at $541,001,000 after purchasing an additional 689,643 shares last quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. increased its stake in Synchrony Financial by 5.2% in the second quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 8,547,277 shares of the financial services provider valued at $236,077,000 after buying an additional 423,606 shares last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its stake in Synchrony Financial by 7.2% in the first quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 6,971,125 shares of the financial services provider valued at $242,720,000 after buying an additional 470,937 shares last quarter. Institutional investors hold 98.26% of the company’s shares.

Synchrony financial price performance

Synchrony Financial stock opened at $34.31 on Friday. The company has a market capitalization of $16.53 billion, a P/E ratio of 5.01, a PEG ratio of 0.26 and a beta of 1.57. Synchrony Financial has a 1-year minimum of $27.22 and a 1-year maximum of $52.49. The company has a 50-day moving average of $31.64 and a 200-day moving average of $35.64. The company has a current ratio of 1.21, a quick ratio of 1.21 and a debt ratio of 0.96.

Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF – Get Rating) last released quarterly earnings data on Monday, July 18. The financial services provider reported earnings per share (EPS) of $1.60 for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.47 by $0.13. Synchrony Financial had a return on equity of 27.06% and a net margin of 22.76%. During the same period last year, the firm posted earnings per share of $2.12. On average, equity analysts expect Synchrony Financial to post 5.79 EPS for the current year.

Synchrony Financial increases its dividend

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, August 11. Shareholders of record on Monday August 1 received a dividend of $0.23 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, July 29. This represents a dividend of $0.92 on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.68%. This is a boost from Synchrony Financial’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.22. Synchrony Financial’s dividend payout ratio is currently 13.43%.

Wall Street analysts predict growth

Several analysts have recently weighed in on SYF shares. JMP Securities lowered its price target on Synchrony Financial shares from $50.00 to $40.00 and set a “market outperformance” rating for the company in a Friday, July 15 research note. TheStreet downgraded shares of Synchrony Financial from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a Tuesday, July 19 research note. Wolfe Research downgraded Synchrony Financial shares from a “peer performing” rating to an “underperforming” rating and set a price target of $22.00 for the stock. in a research note on Thursday, May 12. Morgan Stanley lowered its target price on Synchrony Financial shares from $40.00 to $31.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a Tuesday, July 12 report. Finally, Stephens raised his price target on Synchrony Financial shares from $29.00 to $35.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a Tuesday, July 19 report. One financial analyst has assigned the stock a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and twelve have assigned the stock a buy rating. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the company currently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $45.76.

Synchrony Financial Company Profile

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Synchrony Financial, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a consumer financial services company in the United States. It provides credit products, such as credit cards, commercial credit products and consumer installment loans. The company also offers private label credit cards, dual cards, co-branded and general purpose credit cards, short and long term installment loans and consumer banking products; and deposit products, including certificates of deposit, individual retirement accounts, money market accounts, and savings accounts for retail and commercial customers, as well as deposits through brokerage firms in third-party securities.

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