Palisade Asset Management LLC Trims Position in AFLAC Incorporated (AFL)

Palisade Asset Management LLC trimmed its holdings in shares of AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) by 28.6% in the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 226,846 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after selling 90,995 shares during the period. AFLAC accounts for about 1.8% of Palisade Asset Management LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 16th largest holding. Palisade Asset Management LLC’s holdings in AFLAC were worth $11,342,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also made changes to their positions in the business. Cordasco Financial Network purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 1st quarter worth approximately $25,000. Financial Advantage Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 4th quarter worth approximately $29,000. Nelson Roberts Investment Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 4th quarter worth approximately $33,000. IMS Capital Management purchased a new stake in shares of AFLAC during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $35,000. Finally, NuWave Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of AFLAC by 59.2% during the 1st quarter. NuWave Investment Management LLC now owns 769 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $38,000 after acquiring an additional 286 shares in the last quarter. 68.35% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

AFL stock opened at $50.11 on Wednesday. The firm has a market cap of $37.64 billion, a PE ratio of 12.05, a PEG ratio of 3.42 and a beta of 0.78. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.23, a current ratio of 0.05 and a quick ratio of 0.05. AFLAC Incorporated has a 52 week low of $41.45 and a 52 week high of $50.72.

AFLAC (NYSE:AFL) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 25th. The financial services provider reported $1.12 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.05 by $0.07. AFLAC had a return on equity of 13.49% and a net margin of 14.26%. The business had revenue of $5.66 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.46 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.05 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts forecast that AFLAC Incorporated will post 4.3 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 3rd. Investors of record on Wednesday, May 22nd will be issued a $0.27 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, May 21st. This represents a $1.08 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.16%. AFLAC’s dividend payout ratio is currently 25.96%.

AFL has been the topic of several research analyst reports. SunTrust Banks boosted their price target on AFLAC to $48.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, February 4th. ValuEngine raised AFLAC from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, February 7th. Zacks Investment Research lowered AFLAC from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 18th. Raymond James upped their target price on AFLAC from $55.00 to $56.00 and gave the company a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 30th. Finally, UBS Group cut their price target on AFLAC from $50.00 to $49.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a report on Tuesday, April 30th. 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 assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $49.80.

In related news, insider Audrey B. Tillman sold 2,100 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, February 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.71, for a total value of $102,291.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 105,017 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,115,378.07. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Teresa L. White sold 12,338 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $49.06, for a total value of $605,302.28. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 56,343 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,764,187.58. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 119,248 shares of company stock valued at $5,948,140. 1.30% of the stock is owned by insiders.

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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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for AFLAC (NYSE:AFL)

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