Manulife Financial Corp (MFC) Cut to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Manulife Financial Corp (NYSE:MFC) (TSE:MFC) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note published on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Manulife outperformed the industry in a year’s time. Moreover, the company witnessed its 2017 and 2018 estimates moving north over the last 60 days. Manulife continues to witness new business volumes, particularly in Asia, and positive net flows in its wealth and asset management businesses. Deep reach in the Asian market and a growing asset management business would drive long-term earnings growth. The company remains on track to achieve more than $100 million in expense synergies. However, declining group benefit sales in Canada segment will weigh on results, volatile global equity markets coupled with low bond yields has largely affected the company’s capital position.”

MFC has been the topic of several other reports. ValuEngine cut shares of Manulife Financial Corp from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating in a research report on Friday, June 2nd. BidaskClub raised shares of Manulife Financial Corp from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 11th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $23.33.

Shares of Manulife Financial Corp (NYSE MFC) opened at 20.04 on Monday. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $19.90 and its 200 day moving average price is $18.51. Manulife Financial Corp has a one year low of $13.53 and a one year high of $20.84. The stock has a market capitalization of $39.64 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.70 and a beta of 1.30.

Manulife Financial Corp (NYSE:MFC) (TSE:MFC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 9th. The financial services provider reported $0.42 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.41 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $12.34 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $16.09 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.40 earnings per share. On average, analysts expect that Manulife Financial Corp will post $1.85 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 19th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, August 22nd will be given a dividend of $0.1621 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, August 18th. This is a boost from Manulife Financial Corp’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.15. This represents a $0.65 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.23%. Manulife Financial Corp’s payout ratio is 47.83%.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of MFC. Causeway Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Manulife Financial Corp by 196.6% during the 1st quarter. Causeway Capital Management LLC now owns 15,761,517 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $279,609,000 after buying an additional 10,447,098 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC lifted its position in Manulife Financial Corp by 14.8% during the 1st quarter. FMR LLC now owns 41,809,722 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $741,656,000 after buying an additional 5,378,760 shares in the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lifted its position in Manulife Financial Corp by 651.9% during the 2nd quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 5,888,701 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $110,471,000 after buying an additional 5,105,478 shares in the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP lifted its position in Manulife Financial Corp by 51.9% during the 1st quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 14,767,058 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $261,385,000 after buying an additional 5,046,441 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board bought a new stake in Manulife Financial Corp during the 2nd quarter worth about $64,849,000. 45.97% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Manulife Financial Corp Company Profile

Manulife Financial Corporation (MFC) is a holding company of The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company (MLI), which is a life insurance company, and John Hancock Reassurance Company Ltd. (JHRECO), which is a reinsurance company. The Company operates as a financial services company with principal operations in Asia, Canada and the United States.

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Analyst Recommendations for Manulife Financial Corp (NYSE:MFC)

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