Stock Review: Zooming in on Shares of Mastercard Incorporated (NYSE:MA)

Stock market investors may be closely tracking recent trends. Many investors will keep an eye on where a certain stock has been when trying to project where it is headed. Tracking recent action for Mastercard Incorporated (NYSE:MA), we have seen shares trading close to the 218.91 mark. Taking a wider look back, shares have seen a change of 17.03% over the last 12 weeks. Heading back to the start of the year, we can see that shares have changed 16.04%. Over the past month, shares have seen a change of 11.39%. Over the last week, the stock has moved 1.41%. Taking a look at some popular possible support and resistance levels, we note that the 52-week high is currently 223.77, and the 52-week low is presently 165.2. When a stock price is trading close to the 52-week high or 52-week low, investors may closely track activity to watch for a move through the level.

As we move closer towards the end of the year, investors might be looking over the portfolio and trying to see what has been working and what hasn’t been. Investors may be studying the most recent earnings reports of stocks they own in order to make sure that everything is still in order. Active investors might be double checking the portfolio to make sure that it is properly diversified. There might be a few adjustments that need to be made in order to keep the holdings balanced. Of course, nobody can say for sure which way the momentum will shift over the next couple of quarters, but being prepared for any situation is generally considered to be a good idea.

Shifting the focus to some earnings data, we have noted that the current quarter EPS consensus estimate for Mastercard Incorporated (NYSE:MA) is 1.68. This EPS estimate consists of 15 Wall Street analysts taken into consideration by Zacks Research. For the previous reporting period, the company posted a quarterly EPS of 1.55. Sell-side analysts often provide their best researched estimates at what the company will report. These estimates hold a lot of weight on Wall Street and the investing community. Sometimes these analyst projections are spot on, and other times they are off. When a company reports actual earnings results, the surprise factor can cause a stock price to fluctuate. Investors will often pay added attention to a company that has beaten estimates by a large margin.

Looking at some analyst views on shares of Mastercard Incorporated (NYSE:MA), we note that the consensus target price is resting at $234.43. This is the consensus target using estimates provided by the covering analysts polled. Sell-side analysts often produce target estimates for the companies that they track closely. Price target estimates can be calculated using various methods, and this may cause some analyst estimates to be drastically different than others. Many investors will track stock target prices, especially when analysts update the target price projections.

Investors might be paying attention to what Wall Street analysts think about shares of Mastercard Incorporated (NYSE:MA). Taking a peek at the current consensus broker rating, we can see that the ABR is 1.13. This average rating is provided by Zacks Research. This simplified numeric scale spans the range of one to five which translates brokerage firm Buy/Sell/Hold recommendations into an average broker rating. A low number in the 1-2 range typically indicates a Buy, 3 indicates a Hold and 4-5 represents a consensus Sell rating. In terms of the number of analysts that have the stock rated as a Buy or Strong Buy, we can see that the number is currently 23.

Investing in the stock market will always involve some level of risk. Investors often have to determine how much they are willing to risk, and try to project what the potential reward could be. Taking on too much risk may put the average investor out of their comfort zone. Finding that sweet spot for risk appetite may help investors get on the correct path to conquering the markets. As companies continue to report quarterly earnings, investors will be watching which companies post larger than expected surprises. Analysts will also be watching the numbers closely in order to make sense of the results and update estimates accordingly.