Seeking Alpha
 

American Express Company (AXP)

- NYSE
  • Mar. 26, 2014, 5:15 PM
    • American Express (AXP) is approved by the Fed to boost its quarterly dividend to $0.26 per share from $0.23 for an annualized yield of 1.16%. The company sets a buyback plan of up to $4.4B in stock this year and $1B in 2015 Q1 - a needle-moving 5.7% of the float.
    • Press release
    • Shares +0.1% AH
    | Comment!
  • Mar. 26, 2014, 2:51 AM
    | 15 Comments
  • Mar. 24, 2014, 1:48 PM
    • American Express Company (AXP) declares $0.23/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.
    • Forward yield 1.01%
    • Payable May 9; for shareholders of record April 4; ex-div April 1.
    | Comment!
  • Mar. 21, 2014, 9:30 AM
    • American Express (AXP), Discover (DFS), and Capital One (COF) all have sizable capital surpluses under the Fed's severely adverse scenario, says Buckingham, and are thus poised for sizable capital returns. All three names are ahead 1-2% in opening trades.
    • Last night: Discover unveils proposal for 20% dividend boost and $1.6B in buybacks.
    • Stress test results
    | Comment!
  • Mar. 20, 2014, 5:07 PM
    • Again, all 30 lenders subject to the Fed stress test passed with the exception of Zions Bancorp. Checking the individual results:
    • Regional banks passing: BB&T Corp. (BBT), Comerica (CMA), Fifth Third (FITB), Huntington (HBAN), KeyCorp (KEY), M&T (MTB), PNC, Regions (RF), SunTrust (STI), U.S. Bancorp (USB).
    • Credit card lenders: American Express (AXP), Discover (see here), Capital One (COF).
    • Those controlled by overseas holding companies: BBVA Compass, BMO FInancial, HSBC North America, RBS Citizens Financial, Santander Holdings USA (SAN), UnionBanCal (MTU).
    • Trust banks: Bank of New York (BK), State Street (STT), Northern Trust (NTRS).
    • TBTFs: See here.
    • More on Zions (ZION): The failure likely has something to do with CDOs on its books backed by trust-preferred securities. The bank signaled earlier this year it would likely resubmit its capital plan to the Fed as the test's calculation of its capital ratio wouldn't reflect Zion's planned sale of these.
    | 2 Comments
  • Mar. 20, 2014, 6:56 AM
    | Comment!
  • Mar. 17, 2014, 5:10 PM
    • American Express (AXP) says it is spinning off 50% of its business travel unit in a $900M deal, creating a joint venture with an investor group that was formed by Certares International Bank and includes Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund.
    • The new unit will continue using the AmEx brand and will be led by Bill Glenn, the company’s president of global commercial services; Certares founder Greg O’Hara, a former chief investment officer of J.P. Morgan’s special investments group, will serve as chairman of the joint venture.
    • The consumer travel business isn’t part of the deal.
    | Comment!
  • Mar. 6, 2014, 11:10 AM
    • After its members got bounced from United Airlines' and American Airlines' airport lounges, American Express (AXP +1.2%) is opening their own and trying to one-up the airline clubs with even nicer amenities.
    • The booting of AmEx's top members comes amid the merger of United/Continental and American/US Airways, with both moving to give exclusive access to their main credit-card partner, Chase.
    • Growing in splendor across the globe, the clubs won't cover their costs, but AmEx sees them as another selling point for their cards.
    | 5 Comments
  • Feb. 20, 2014, 3:29 PM
    • Expecting dividends to grow 49% on average for the banks subject to the Fed's stress tests (about the same as last year), Markit, says Citigroup (C) and Bank of America (BAC) will lead the way with 400% boosts. "They are the last of the major banks paying minimal dividends ... change is overdue."
    • While 400% is a big number, Citi and BofA will continue to lag their peers in terms of yield (400% growth on a penny just leads to a nickel).
    • Also expected to have a significant pop is Morgan Stanley (MS) - a doubling of the payout to $0.10 per share and a 1.4% yield. Others in the top 5 in increases are Zions Bancorp (ZION) with a 75% boost to $0.07 and Regions Financial (RF) up 67% to $0.05.
    • The others: KEY +27%, HBAN +20%, BK +20%, STI +20%, COF +17%, DFS +15%, AXP +13%, STT +12%, JPM +11%, CMA +11%, PNC +9%, USB +9%, GS +9%, FITB +8%, WFC +7%, NTRS +6%, and no soup for BBT and MTB where the dividends are expected to be flat at $0.23 and $0.70 per share, respectively.
    • As for ETFs, the dividend jumps are expected to have the biggest impact on the XLF which would see a 25% increase in payout: The ETF has 81 companies, but the top 5 holdings - BofA, Wells, JPM, Citi, USB - make up 41% of assets. In contrast, just two CCAR banks make up the top five holdings of the KBE and it should see a more muted increase of just 18%.
    • Related ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, SEF, IYG, FXO, PFI, KBWB, RKH, QABA, FNCL, FINU, KRU, RWW, KBWR, RYF, PSCF, KRS, FINZ
    | 13 Comments
  • Feb. 10, 2014, 11:00 AM
    • American Express (AXP +0.8%) is upgraded to Overweight from Equal weight at Morgan Stanley
    • Apollo Global (APO +1.9%) is upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Citi.
    • California United Bancorp (CUNB -0.8%) is upgraded to Outperform at RayJay.
    • Cape Bancorp (CBNJ +0.9%) is upgraded to Buy at Sandler O'Neill.
    • Fifth Third (FITB +0.6%) is upgraded to Positive from Neutral at Susquehanna.
    • JPMorgan (JPM) is upgraded to Buy from Hold at SocGen.
    • Legg Mason (LM +0.7%) is upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at KBW.
    • Zions Bancorp (ZION +1.6%) is upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC Capital.
    | Comment!
  • Feb. 6, 2014, 9:19 AM
    • Janney Capital Markets upgrades American Express (AXP) to a Buy rating from Neutral.
    • Forecasts on the company's revenue growth have trickled higher as more positive reads on economic activity have come in.
    • AXP +0.6% premarket
    | Comment!
  • Jan. 17, 2014, 1:05 PM
    • American Express' (AXP +4.9%) expense management and lower credit losses allowed it to again pull a rabbit out of the hat despite a top line earnings miss, says Goldman's Ryan Nash, reiterating a Neutral rating and $100 price target.
    • "We believe the bar for 2014 will likely be higher as its provision will likely be a further headwind (we model 7% increase) and we sensed AXP is less optimistic on large buybacks given the run shares have had." Any upside this year, he says, will have to come from continued expense discipline.
    | Comment!
  • Jan. 17, 2014, 9:00 AM
    • We'll keep an eye on the credit card firms following last night's earnings reports from AMEX (AXP) and Capital One (COF).
    • Susquehanna is liking American Express - upgrading from Neutral to Positive and raising the price target to $107 from $90 - but cashes in its chips on its long CapOne call, downgrading to Neutral.
    • Jefferies boosts its PT on both - AMEX to $88 from $78, and CapOne to $88 from $80.
    • AXP +2.1%, COF -2.7% premarket
    • AMEX earnings coverage and CC transcript
    • CapOne earnings coverage and CC transcript
    | Comment!
  • Jan. 16, 2014, 4:16 PM
    • Revenue of $8.5B up 5% Y/Y. Provisions for losses of $528M off 17%.
    • Expenses of $6B off 7% Y/Y when adjusted for fx translations, but reflects some extraordinary charges a year ago.
    • ROE of 27.8% compares to 23.1% a year ago.
    • CEO Chenault notes cardmember spending in Q4 rose 8% despite mixed reports elsewhere about holiday action. U.S. card services net income of $864M vs. $423M a year ago.
    • AXP -0.8% AH
    • Press release, Q4 results
    • CC at 5 ET
    | Comment!
  • Jan. 16, 2014, 4:06 PM
    • American Express Company (AXP): Q4 EPS of $1.25 in-line.
    • Revenue of $8.55B
    • Shares -1.8%.
    • Press Release
    | Comment!
  • Jan. 16, 2014, 12:10 AM
AXP vs. ETF Alternatives
Company Description
American Express Co is a payments, network and travel company, which offers credit payment card products and travel-related services to consumers and businesses.
Sector: Financial
Country: United States