Murphy Capital Management Inc. grew its stake in shares of AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) by 3.7% in the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 40,055 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 1,435 shares during the period. Murphy Capital Management Inc.’s holdings in AFLAC were worth $2,002,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Several other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Cordasco Financial Network purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 1st quarter valued at $25,000. Financial Advantage Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 4th quarter valued at $29,000. Nelson Roberts Investment Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 4th quarter valued at $33,000. IMS Capital Management purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 3rd quarter valued at $35,000. Finally, Vigilant Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 4th quarter valued at $39,000. 68.40% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
In other news, insider Masatoshi Koide sold 29,008 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, March 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $49.75, for a total value of $1,443,148.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 64,512 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,209,472. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Audrey B. Tillman sold 2,100 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.71, for a total transaction of $102,291.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 105,017 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,115,378.07. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 89,244 shares of company stock worth $4,363,557. Insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.
AFLAC (NYSE:AFL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 25th. The financial services provider reported $1.12 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.05 by $0.07. The business had revenue of $5.66 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.46 billion. AFLAC had a net margin of 14.26% and a return on equity of 13.49%. The company’s revenue was up 3.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.05 EPS. Research analysts expect that AFLAC Incorporated will post 4.3 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 3rd. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, May 22nd will be issued a $0.27 dividend. This represents a $1.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.14%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, May 21st. AFLAC’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 25.96%.
Several research firms have recently weighed in on AFL. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of AFLAC from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $55.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Tuesday. Raymond James raised their price objective on shares of AFLAC from $55.00 to $56.00 and gave the company a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday. UBS Group reduced their target price on shares of AFLAC from $50.00 to $49.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday. SunTrust Banks increased their target price on shares of AFLAC to $48.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, February 4th. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of AFLAC from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, February 7th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating, two have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $49.80.
AFLAC Company Profile
Aflac Incorporated, through its subsidiaries, 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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