Principal Financial Group Inc. lifted its stake in MarketAxess Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:MKTX) by 1.0% during the 1st quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 164,517 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after buying an additional 1,655 shares during the quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc.’s holdings in MarketAxess were worth $40,484,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Executive Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in shares of MarketAxess in the fourth quarter worth about $27,000. Berman Capital Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of MarketAxess during the fourth quarter valued at about $30,000. Enlightenment Research LLC purchased a new stake in shares of MarketAxess during the fourth quarter valued at about $42,000. Pearl River Capital LLC purchased a new stake in shares of MarketAxess during the fourth quarter valued at about $43,000. Finally, Riverview Trust Co purchased a new stake in shares of MarketAxess during the fourth quarter valued at about $48,000. 99.19% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Several brokerages recently weighed in on MKTX. BidaskClub upgraded shares of MarketAxess from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, March 22nd. Rosenblatt Securities initiated coverage on shares of MarketAxess in a research note on Monday, April 15th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $255.00 price target on the stock. Buckingham Research lowered MarketAxess from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $245.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Wednesday. Barclays raised their price objective on MarketAxess from $218.00 to $244.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a report on Thursday, April 25th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded MarketAxess from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, April 13th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. MarketAxess has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $234.14.

In other news, Director Stephen P. Casper sold 102 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $337.30, for a total value of $34,404.60. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 13,157 shares in the company, valued at $4,437,856.10. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, CEO Richard M. Mcvey sold 20,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $281.14, for a total value of $5,622,800.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 1,006,289 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $282,908,089.46. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 27,591 shares of company stock worth $7,719,158 over the last quarter. 3.52% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Shares of MarketAxess stock traded down $8.62 during trading hours on Wednesday, hitting $325.37. 8,404 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 304,606. MarketAxess Holdings Inc. has a 1 year low of $172.09 and a 1 year high of $342.98. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.14, a current ratio of 10.82 and a quick ratio of 10.82. The stock has a market capitalization of $12.59 billion, a PE ratio of 72.31, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 12.96 and a beta of 0.18.

MarketAxess (NASDAQ:MKTX) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th. The financial services provider reported $1.39 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.37 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $124.49 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $125.43 million. MarketAxess had a return on equity of 29.88% and a net margin of 39.84%. MarketAxess’s revenue was up 8.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.27 earnings per share. As a group, equities research analysts anticipate that MarketAxess Holdings Inc. will post 5.16 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, May 22nd. Investors of record on Wednesday, May 8th were given a dividend of $0.51 per share. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, May 7th. This represents a $2.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.63%. MarketAxess’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 44.64%.

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About MarketAxess

MarketAxess Holdings Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates an electronic trading platform that enables fixed-income market participants to trade corporate bonds and other types of fixed-income instruments worldwide. It offers institutional investor and broker-dealer firms the access to global liquidity in U.S.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for MarketAxess (NASDAQ:MKTX)

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