Principal Financial Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:PFG) Short Interest Down 22.2% in April


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Principal Financial Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:PFG) saw a significant decline in short interest in the month of April. As of April 15th, there was short interest totalling 3,990,000 shares, a decline of 22.2% from the March 31st total of 5,130,000 shares. Currently, 1.5% of the shares of the company are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 1,720,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 2.3 days.

A number of research analysts recently issued reports on the company. Evercore ISI reiterated an “in-line” rating and issued a $63.00 target price on shares of Principal Financial Group in a report on Monday, March 1st. Morgan Stanley boosted their price target on Principal Financial Group from $67.00 to $68.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Tuesday. Royal Bank of Canada reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $52.00 price objective on shares of Principal Financial Group in a research report on Sunday, January 31st. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price target on Principal Financial Group from $55.00 to $66.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Monday, April 5th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Principal Financial Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $55.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Thursday, January 14th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. Principal Financial Group presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $55.91.

Shares of PFG stock traded up $0.18 during trading on Tuesday, hitting $64.66. 1,428,103 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,638,561. Principal Financial Group has a twelve month low of $30.74 and a twelve month high of $65.21. The firm has a market capitalization of $17.59 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.66, a P/E/G ratio of 1.18 and a beta of 1.64. The business’s 50-day simple moving average is $61.68 and its 200 day simple moving average is $54.35. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.27, a quick ratio of 0.07 and a current ratio of 0.07.

Principal Financial Group (NASDAQ:PFG) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, April 27th. The company reported $1.53 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.35 by $0.18. Principal Financial Group had a net margin of 8.15% and a return on equity of 9.22%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.15 EPS. On average, equities analysts forecast that Principal Financial Group will post 4.89 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 25th. Investors of record on Thursday, June 3rd will be given a $0.61 dividend. This represents a $2.44 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.77%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, June 2nd. This is a positive change from Principal Financial Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.56. Principal Financial Group’s dividend payout ratio is 40.14%.

In other Principal Financial Group news, insider Timothy Mark Dunbar sold 10,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, February 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $60.40, for a total value of $604,000.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CFO Deanna D. Strable-Soethout sold 3,496 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $57.15, for a total transaction of $199,796.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 21,906 shares of company stock valued at $1,257,348 over the last 90 days. 1.09% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Dean Investment Associates LLC boosted its holdings in Principal Financial Group by 0.9% during the first quarter. Dean Investment Associates LLC now owns 46,693 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,800,000 after purchasing an additional 414 shares in the last quarter. Roosevelt Investment Group LLC boosted its holdings in Principal Financial Group by 21.6% during the first quarter. Roosevelt Investment Group LLC now owns 8,318 shares of the company’s stock valued at $499,000 after purchasing an additional 1,476 shares in the last quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Principal Financial Group by 6.9% in the first quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 36,101 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,165,000 after acquiring an additional 2,337 shares during the last quarter. Community Capital Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Principal Financial Group in the first quarter valued at approximately $600,000. Finally, Ellevest Inc. raised its stake in shares of Principal Financial Group by 20.8% in the first quarter. Ellevest Inc. now owns 3,245 shares of the company’s stock valued at $195,000 after acquiring an additional 559 shares during the last quarter. 69.09% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Principal Financial Group Company Profile

Principal Financial Group, Inc provides retirement, asset management, and insurance products and services to businesses, individuals, and institutional clients worldwide. The company operates in Retirement and Income Solutions, Principal Global Investors, Principal International, and U.S. Insurance Solutions segments.

Further Reading: Cost of Equity

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