Aurora Investment Counsel Acquires New Position in Discover Financial Services (DFS)

Aurora Investment Counsel acquired a new position in Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund acquired 35,889 shares of the financial services provider’s stock, valued at approximately $2,761,000. Discover Financial Services makes up about 1.4% of Aurora Investment Counsel’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 12th biggest position.

A number of other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the business. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Discover Financial Services by 0.9% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 25,748,479 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,601,297,000 after acquiring an additional 217,535 shares during the period. Boston Partners lifted its stake in shares of Discover Financial Services by 4.6% during the third quarter. Boston Partners now owns 12,187,219 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $785,833,000 after acquiring an additional 538,244 shares during the period. Capital World Investors lifted its stake in shares of Discover Financial Services by 18.3% during the second quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 10,578,342 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $657,867,000 after acquiring an additional 1,638,334 shares during the period. FMR LLC lifted its stake in shares of Discover Financial Services by 17.4% during the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 10,374,397 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $645,184,000 after acquiring an additional 1,534,882 shares during the period. Finally, Diamond Hill Capital Management Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Discover Financial Services by 97.6% during the third quarter. Diamond Hill Capital Management Inc. now owns 7,035,035 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $453,619,000 after acquiring an additional 3,475,126 shares during the period. 84.77% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Discover Financial Services (DFS) traded up $0.57 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $77.48. The stock had a trading volume of 1,921,100 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,521,750. The company has a quick ratio of 1.55, a current ratio of 1.55 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.52. The firm has a market capitalization of $28,510.00, a PE ratio of 13.34, a P/E/G ratio of 1.83 and a beta of 1.52. Discover Financial Services has a 52 week low of $57.50 and a 52 week high of $77.79.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, December 7th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, November 22nd were given a dividend of $0.35 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, November 21st. This represents a $1.40 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.81%. Discover Financial Services’s dividend payout ratio is currently 24.10%.

A number of equities research analysts recently commented on the company. Deutsche Bank assumed coverage on Discover Financial Services in a report on Tuesday. They issued a “buy” rating and a $92.00 price objective for the company. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Discover Financial Services from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday. Bank of America upgraded Discover Financial Services from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $83.00 price objective for the company in a report on Monday, December 18th. Buckingham Research initiated coverage on Discover Financial Services in a report on Monday, October 2nd. They issued a “buy” rating and a $74.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Wedbush set a $80.00 price target on Discover Financial Services and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, December 11th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and eighteen have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $78.24.

In other news, EVP Diane E. Offereins sold 15,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.36, for a total transaction of $1,055,400.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 160,747 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $11,310,158.92. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, EVP Carlos Minetti sold 8,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $66.68, for a total value of $533,440.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 173,149 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $11,545,575.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 130,019 shares of company stock valued at $8,892,976 over the last ninety days. 0.96% of the stock is owned by insiders.

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Discover Financial Services Profile

Discover Financial Services (DFS) is a direct banking and payment services company. The Company is a bank holding company, as well as a financial holding company. The Company operates through two segments: Direct Banking and Payment Services. It provides direct banking products and services, and payment services through its subsidiaries.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS)

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