Traders Buy Aflac Inc. (AFL) on Weakness
Traders bought shares of Aflac Inc. (NYSE:AFL) on weakness during trading hours on Thursday. $41.73 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $20.42 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $21.31 million into the stock. Of all companies tracked, Aflac had the 16th highest net in-flow for the day. Aflac traded down ($0.04) for the day and closed at $73.32
A number of equities research analysts have recently issued reports on AFL shares. Raymond James Financial Inc. lowered Aflac from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Thursday, April 21st. FBR & Co lowered Aflac from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and lowered their price objective for the stock from $71.00 to $68.00 in a research report on Tuesday, May 10th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Evercore ISI assumed coverage on Aflac in a research report on Wednesday, July 6th. They issued a “sell” rating and a $63.00 price objective for the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Aflac from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $71.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Tuesday, April 5th. Finally, Vetr lowered Aflac from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $70.02 price objective for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, April 19th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $69.25.
The firm has a market cap of $29.64 billion and a P/E ratio of 11.89. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $71.45 and its 200-day moving average price is $65.51.
Aflac (NYSE:AFL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $1.71 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.68 by $0.03. The business earned $5.44 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.45 billion. The company’s revenue was up 2.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.50 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts predict that Aflac Inc. will post $6.79 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, August 24th will be paid a dividend of $0.41 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, August 22nd. This represents a $1.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.27%.
In other news, insider Charles D. Lake II sold 17,791 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $68.48, for a total transaction of $1,218,327.68. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 46,547 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,187,538.56. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Teresa L. White sold 2,853 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $69.80, for a total transaction of $199,139.40. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 30,362 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,119,267.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.
Other hedge funds recently made changes to their positions in the company. Victory Capital Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Aflac by 17.9% in the fourth quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 874,434 shares of the company’s stock valued at $52,378,000 after buying an additional 132,528 shares in the last quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc boosted its stake in shares of Aflac by 1.3% in the fourth quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc now owns 40,804 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,444,000 after buying an additional 524 shares during the period. Coho Partners Ltd. boosted its stake in shares of Aflac by 1.9% in the fourth quarter. Coho Partners Ltd. now owns 1,012,037 shares of the company’s stock worth $60,621,000 after buying an additional 18,832 shares during the period. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Aflac during the fourth quarter worth $1,400,000. Finally, Palladium Partners LLC boosted its stake in shares of Aflac by 1.1% in the fourth quarter. Palladium Partners LLC now owns 46,352 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,776,000 after buying an additional 486 shares during the period.
Aflac Incorporated is a business holding company. The Company engaged in is supplemental health and life insurance, which is marketed and administered through its subsidiary, American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus (Aflac). Aflac’s insurance business consists of two segments: Aflac Japan and Aflac U.S.
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