Argo Group International Holdings Ltd. (NASDAQ:AGII) shares gapped up before the market opened on Friday . The stock had previously closed at $51.71, but opened at $51.75. Argo Group International Holdings shares last traded at $52.48, with a volume of 24,778 shares.

Several research analysts have weighed in on the stock. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods restated a “hold” rating on shares of Argo Group International Holdings in a report on Saturday, May 14th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Argo Group International Holdings from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 19th. Finally, JMP Securities started coverage on shares of Argo Group International Holdings in a report on Monday, June 27th. They issued a “market perform” rating for the company. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $62.00.

The stock has a market capitalization of $1.58 billion and a P/E ratio of 12.34. The company’s 50 day moving average is $52.00 and its 200 day moving average is $51.49.

Argo Group International Holdings (NASDAQ:AGII) last released its quarterly earnings results on Monday, May 2nd. The company reported $0.98 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.95 by $0.03. The company earned $370.10 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $355.64 million. The business’s revenue was down 1.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $2.05 EPS. Analysts expect that Argo Group International Holdings Ltd. will post $3.13 EPS for the current year.

In related news, CEO Mark E. Watson III sold 9,718 shares of Argo Group International Holdings stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.13, for a total value of $564,907.34. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 535,859 shares in the company, valued at $31,149,483.67. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, CFO Jay Stanley Bullock sold 8,865 shares of Argo Group International Holdings stock in a transaction on Monday, June 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.49, for a total transaction of $474,188.85. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 95,718 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,119,955.82. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of hedge funds recently added to or reduced their stakes in AGII. Principal Financial Group Inc. boosted its stake in Argo Group International Holdings by 2,683.7% in the fourth quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 170,361 shares of the company’s stock valued at $10,194,000 after buying an additional 164,241 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can boosted its stake in Argo Group International Holdings by 415.0% in the fourth quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 53,036 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,174,000 after buying an additional 42,738 shares during the period. Fiduciary Management Associates LLC boosted its stake in Argo Group International Holdings by 14.5% in the fourth quarter. Fiduciary Management Associates LLC now owns 325,373 shares of the company’s stock valued at $19,471,000 after buying an additional 41,135 shares during the period. California Public Employees Retirement System boosted its stake in Argo Group International Holdings by 20.0% in the fourth quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 134,019 shares of the company’s stock valued at $8,020,000 after buying an additional 22,300 shares during the period. Finally, Nationwide Fund Advisors boosted its stake in Argo Group International Holdings by 38.5% in the fourth quarter. Nationwide Fund Advisors now owns 72,915 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,363,000 after buying an additional 20,275 shares during the period.

Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. is an underwriter of specialty insurance and reinsurance products in the property and casualty market. The Company operates through four segments: Excess and Surplus Lines, Commercial Specialty, International Specialty and Syndicate 1200. Excess and Surplus Lines segment carriers focus on risks that the standard (admitted) market is unwilling or unable to underwrite.

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