Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. Cuts Holdings in AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL)

Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. reduced its holdings in shares of AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) by 0.9% during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 338,139 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after selling 2,953 shares during the quarter. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.’s holdings in AFLAC were worth $15,406,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Several other large investors have also made changes to their positions in AFL. Prospera Financial Services Inc purchased a new stake in AFLAC in the third quarter worth about $512,000. Liberty Capital Management Inc. increased its position in AFLAC by 4.4% in the third quarter. Liberty Capital Management Inc. now owns 90,663 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $4,268,000 after buying an additional 3,847 shares in the last quarter. CIBC World Markets Inc. grew its position in shares of AFLAC by 5.8% during the third quarter. CIBC World Markets Inc. now owns 103,436 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $4,869,000 after purchasing an additional 5,654 shares in the last quarter. First Trust Advisors LP grew its position in shares of AFLAC by 13.3% during the third quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 2,109,635 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $99,301,000 after purchasing an additional 248,251 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Hexavest Inc. grew its position in shares of AFLAC by 44.4% during the fourth quarter. Hexavest Inc. now owns 1,463,674 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $66,685,000 after purchasing an additional 450,012 shares in the last quarter. 67.14% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of NYSE AFL opened at $49.02 on Thursday. The company has a current ratio of 0.05, a quick ratio of 0.05 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.25. AFLAC Incorporated has a fifty-two week low of $41.45 and a fifty-two week high of $49.35. The company has a market capitalization of $36.58 billion, a PE ratio of 11.78, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.33 and a beta of 0.78.

AFLAC (NYSE:AFL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, January 31st. The financial services provider reported $1.02 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.94 by $0.08. AFLAC had a return on equity of 13.62% and a net margin of 13.42%. The firm had revenue of $5.48 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.47 billion. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that AFLAC Incorporated will post 4.22 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, February 20th will be issued a $0.27 dividend. This represents a $1.08 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.20%. This is an increase from AFLAC’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.26. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, February 19th. AFLAC’s dividend payout ratio is presently 25.00%.

Several analysts recently issued reports on the company. SunTrust Banks increased their target price on AFLAC to $48.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, February 4th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded AFLAC from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, October 29th. ValuEngine upgraded AFLAC from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, February 7th. Morgan Stanley cut their target price on AFLAC from $48.00 to $46.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Tuesday, November 13th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered AFLAC from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $51.00 price target for the company. in a research note on Wednesday, January 2nd. Eleven research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $48.42.

In other AFLAC news, VP Richard Williams, Jr. sold 1,129 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, December 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.97, for a total transaction of $49,642.13. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 14,577 shares in the company, valued at approximately $640,950.69. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider James Todd Daniels sold 3,400 shares of AFLAC stock in a transaction on Friday, December 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $44.14, for a total value of $150,076.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 11,394 shares in the company, valued at $502,931.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 31,649 shares of company stock worth $1,493,613. Company insiders own 1.70% of the company’s stock.

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AFLAC Profile

Aflac Incorporated, through its subsidiary, American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus, provides voluntary supplemental health and life insurance products. It operates through two segments, Aflac Japan and Aflac U.S. The Aflac Japan segment offers voluntary supplemental insurance products, including cancer plans, general medical indemnity plans, medical/sickness riders, care plans, living benefit life plans, ordinary life insurance plans, and annuities in Japan.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for AFLAC (NYSE:AFL)

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