Daiwa Securities Group Inc. increased its stake in Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) by 3.5% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 11,850 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after buying an additional 400 shares during the period. Daiwa Securities Group Inc.’s holdings in Aflac were worth $921,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of Aflac by 3.4% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 31,980,927 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $2,316,059,000 after buying an additional 1,048,415 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in shares of Aflac by 1,750.9% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 23,849,668 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,727,193,000 after buying an additional 22,561,116 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp increased its stake in shares of Aflac by 2.4% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 21,858,806 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,583,023,000 after buying an additional 505,060 shares during the last quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Aflac by 4.1% in the first quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 4,390,534 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $317,962,000 after buying an additional 173,236 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Aflac by 8.4% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 4,076,593 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $294,824,000 after buying an additional 314,506 shares during the last quarter. 64.64% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) opened at 80.75 on Friday. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $78.72 and a 200-day moving average of $74.57. Aflac Incorporated has a 12-month low of $66.50 and a 12-month high of $81.80. The company has a market cap of $31.91 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.21 and a beta of 0.99.

Aflac (NYSE:AFL) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The financial services provider reported $1.83 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.63 by $0.20. The firm had revenue of $5.43 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.48 billion. Aflac had a net margin of 11.98% and a return on equity of 13.09%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down .2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $1.65 earnings per share. Analysts predict that Aflac Incorporated will post $6.67 EPS for the current year.

Aflac declared that its board has approved a share repurchase plan on Tuesday, August 8th that permits the company to repurchase 40,000,000 shares. This repurchase authorization permits the financial services provider to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are typically a sign that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, August 23rd will be given a dividend of $0.43 per share. The ex-dividend date is Monday, August 21st. This represents a $1.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.13%. Aflac’s dividend payout ratio is presently 25.94%.

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Several analysts recently commented on AFL shares. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Aflac from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 31st. Bank of America Corporation raised shares of Aflac from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their target price for the stock from $75.00 to $78.00 in a report on Tuesday, July 4th. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Aflac from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 1st. ValuEngine raised shares of Aflac from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 1st. Finally, Raymond James Financial, Inc. raised shares of Aflac from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $80.00 target price for the company in a report on Tuesday, April 18th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $76.50.

In other news, Director Karole Lloyd acquired 1,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, June 12th. The stock was bought at an average cost of $77.01 per share, for a total transaction of $77,010.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 7,253 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $558,553.53. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, President Kriss Cloninger III sold 2,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, June 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $77.72, for a total transaction of $194,300.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the president now owns 241,646 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $18,780,727.12. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 240,203 shares of company stock valued at $18,612,224 in the last quarter. Company insiders own 3.00% of the company’s stock.

About Aflac

Aflac Incorporated is a business holding company. The Company is involved in supplemental health and life insurance, which is marketed and administered through its subsidiary, American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus (Aflac). The Company’s insurance business consists of two segments: Aflac Japan and Aflac U.S.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Aflac (NYSE:AFL)

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