AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:AFSI) shares fell 2.4% during trading on Wednesday . The stock traded as low as $11.48 and last traded at $11.78. 1,025,283 shares changed hands during mid-day trading, a decline of 46% from the average session volume of 1,908,590 shares. The stock had previously closed at $11.50.

Several research firms recently commented on AFSI. ValuEngine lowered shares of AmTrust Financial Services from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, September 1st. BidaskClub lowered shares of AmTrust Financial Services from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, August 11th. TheStreet lowered shares of AmTrust Financial Services from a “c” rating to a “d” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 19th. JMP Securities began coverage on shares of AmTrust Financial Services in a report on Friday, July 7th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $18.00 price target on the stock. Finally, FBR & Co restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $22.00 price target (up previously from $16.00) on shares of AmTrust Financial Services in a report on Friday, June 9th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $19.50.

The stock’s 50 day moving average is $14.27 and its 200 day moving average is $16.04. The stock has a market capitalization of $2.26 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.21 and a beta of 1.21.

AmTrust Financial Services (NASDAQ:AFSI) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 8th. The insurance provider reported $0.40 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.36 by $0.04. The business had revenue of $1.37 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.38 billion. AmTrust Financial Services had a return on equity of 14.26% and a net margin of 5.14%. The firm’s revenue was up 8.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.77 EPS. On average, analysts forecast that AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. will post $1.41 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 16th. Investors of record on Monday, October 2nd will be issued a $0.17 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, September 29th. This represents a $0.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 5.90%. AmTrust Financial Services’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 51.13%.

In related news, SVP Stephen Ungar sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, June 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $13.92, for a total value of $69,600.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 175,256 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,439,563.52. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 50.80% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its holdings in AmTrust Financial Services by 33.6% in the 1st quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 8,667,061 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $159,994,000 after purchasing an additional 2,181,846 shares during the last quarter. Edge Asset Management Inc. lifted its holdings in AmTrust Financial Services by 24.9% in the 1st quarter. Edge Asset Management Inc. now owns 5,082,376 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $93,819,000 after purchasing an additional 1,013,216 shares during the last quarter. Royal Bank of Canada lifted its holdings in AmTrust Financial Services by 20.3% in the 2nd quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 4,012,368 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $60,748,000 after purchasing an additional 676,537 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp lifted its holdings in AmTrust Financial Services by 54.1% in the 2nd quarter. State Street Corp now owns 3,292,917 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $49,854,000 after purchasing an additional 1,156,431 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Principal Financial Group Inc. lifted its holdings in AmTrust Financial Services by 50.1% in the 1st quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 2,298,469 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $42,430,000 after purchasing an additional 767,278 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 39.43% of the company’s stock.

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About AmTrust Financial Services

Amtrust Financial Services, Inc (AmTrust) is an insurance holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides specialty property and casualty insurance focusing on workers’ compensation and commercial package coverage for small business, specialty risk and extended warranty coverage, and property and casualty coverage for middle market business.

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