American Equity Investment Life Holding Co. (NYSE:AEL) shares gapped up prior to trading on Wednesday . The stock had previously closed at $15.64, but opened at $15.65. American Equity Investment Life Holding shares last traded at $16.13, with a volume of 257,607 shares changing hands.

A number of research analysts recently weighed in on the stock. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, May 2nd. FBR & Co reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $21.00 price objective (up from $20.00) on shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding in a research note on Thursday, May 26th. Citigroup Inc. reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding in a research note on Saturday, April 9th. Evercore ISI started coverage on shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding in a research note on Wednesday, July 6th. They issued a “buy” rating for the company. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and cut their price target for the company from $23.00 to $20.00 in a report on Monday, June 6th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. American Equity Investment Life Holding currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $23.67.

The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $15.31 and a 200-day moving average price of $15.24. The company has a market capitalization of $1.32 billion and a P/E ratio of 7.74.

American Equity Investment Life Holding (NYSE:AEL) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.60 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.61 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $549.80 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $467.51 million. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.64 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 24.6% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts predict that American Equity Investment Life Holding Co. will post $2.11 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, Director Alexander Meeker Clark sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, June 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $16.66, for a total transaction of $83,300.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 8,500 shares in the company, valued at $141,610. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website.

Other hedge funds and institutional investors recently modified their holdings of the company. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its position in shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding by 3.7% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 6,398,888 shares of the company’s stock worth $153,766,000 after buying an additional 225,586 shares during the period. Schroder Investment Management Group boosted its stake in shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding by 9.0% in the fourth quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 1,287,760 shares of the company’s stock worth $30,945,000 after buying an additional 105,900 shares in the last quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN boosted its stake in shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding by 1.2% in the fourth quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 746,648 shares of the company’s stock worth $17,941,000 after buying an additional 8,945 shares in the last quarter. Morgan Stanley boosted its stake in shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding by 10.5% in the fourth quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 709,393 shares of the company’s stock worth $17,048,000 after buying an additional 67,131 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Diamond Hill Capital Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of American Equity Investment Life Holding by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. Diamond Hill Capital Management Inc. now owns 277,235 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,662,000 after buying an additional 1,025 shares in the last quarter.

American Equity Investment Life Holding Company is engaged in the development and sale of fixed index and fixed rate annuity products. The Company issues fixed annuity and life insurance products through its life insurance subsidiaries, American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company, American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company of New York and Eagle Life Insurance Company.

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