Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) Receives Neutral Rating from B. Riley

B. Riley restated their neutral rating on shares of Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) in a report released on Monday, November 6th. B. Riley also issued estimates for Aflac’s FY2017 earnings at $6.75 EPS, FY2018 earnings at $6.80 EPS and FY2019 earnings at $7.20 EPS.

A number of other research firms have also recently issued reports on AFL. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Aflac from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $93.00 price target on the stock in a report on Tuesday, September 5th. BidaskClub cut Aflac from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a report on Tuesday, August 1st. ValuEngine raised Aflac from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 1st. Barclays PLC increased their price target on Aflac from $73.00 to $79.00 and gave the company an equal weight rating in a research report on Friday, August 11th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company reissued a hold rating and issued a $82.00 price target on shares of Aflac in a research report on Thursday, September 28th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $79.63.

Shares of Aflac (AFL) opened at $83.85 on Monday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.24, a quick ratio of 0.07 and a current ratio of 0.07. The firm has a market cap of $32,965.63, a PE ratio of 12.44, a P/E/G ratio of 2.48 and a beta of 1.00. Aflac has a 52-week low of $66.50 and a 52-week high of $85.70.

Aflac (NYSE:AFL) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The financial services provider reported $1.70 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.63 by $0.07. The firm had revenue of $5.51 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.48 billion. Aflac had a return on equity of 12.87% and a net margin of 12.49%. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 3.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $1.74 earnings per share. analysts expect that Aflac will post 6.76 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, November 15th will be given a dividend of $0.45 per share. This represents a $1.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.15%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 14th. This is an increase from Aflac’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.43. Aflac’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 26.09%.

Aflac declared that its Board of Directors has authorized a share buyback plan on Tuesday, August 8th that permits the company to buyback 40,000,000 outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the financial services provider to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

In other news, President Kriss Cloninger III sold 25,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $83.83, for a total transaction of $2,095,750.00. Following the transaction, the president now directly owns 298,646 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $25,035,494.18. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, Director Douglas Wayne Johnson sold 1,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, September 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $83.58, for a total value of $125,370.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 13,733 shares in the company, valued at $1,147,804.14. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 28,709 shares of company stock worth $2,404,680. 3.00% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Atwood & Palmer Inc. boosted its position in shares of Aflac by 320.5% during the second quarter. Atwood & Palmer Inc. now owns 1,312 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $102,000 after purchasing an additional 1,000 shares in the last quarter. San Francisco Sentry Investment Group CA boosted its holdings in Aflac by 4,338.7% in the third quarter. San Francisco Sentry Investment Group CA now owns 1,376 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $112,000 after acquiring an additional 1,345 shares in the last quarter. CWM LLC boosted its holdings in Aflac by 2.1% in the second quarter. CWM LLC now owns 1,430 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $111,000 after acquiring an additional 30 shares in the last quarter. Capital Analysts LLC bought a new stake in Aflac in the second quarter worth $131,000. Finally, Washington Trust Bank boosted its holdings in Aflac by 0.9% in the second quarter. Washington Trust Bank now owns 1,704 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $132,000 after acquiring an additional 16 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 66.69% 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.

Analyst Recommendations for Aflac (NYSE:AFL)

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