MA Stock Stumbles on CEO Departure, Q1 Forecast

The firm predicted its current-quarter revenue will take a 2% to 3% hit

Deputy Editor
Feb 25, 2020 at 9:11 AM
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The shares of Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) are being dragged even further down the charts this morning following news of CEO Ajay Banga's resignation, at the start of 2021. Banga will be replaced by Chief Product Officer Michael Miebach. Also pressuring shares this morning is an updated current-quarter forecast from the company, predicting that its first-quarter revenue would likely take a 2% to 3% hit, should the coronavirus continue its wild spread through the first quarter. At last check, MA is down 1.5% to trade at $319.94.

This comes right on the heels of yesterday's massive 4.4% plummet from Mastercard's peak atop the $340 region. In fact, MA just notched a record high of $347.25 last week. Despite the dip, the equity is still keeping its head above its year-to-date breakeven, as well as its 50-day moving average, which acted as support for the equity during yesterday's trading. 

Analysts are overwhelmingly optimistic on the stock still, with 24 of the 26 in coverage giving MA a "strong buy" or better rating. Meanwhile, the consensus 12-month price target price of $359.65 is a 10.8% premium to last night's close. 

Options players have tended towards bullish positions as well. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) MA sports a 10-day call/put volume ratio of 1.72. This ratio sits higher than 76% of all other readings from the last year, suggesting long calls have been bought over long puts at a quicker-than-usual clip. 

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