Hartford Financial Services Group Inc (HIG) Receives Average Rating of “Buy” from Brokerages

Shares of Hartford Financial Services Group Inc (NYSE:HIG) have been given a consensus recommendation of “Buy” by the sixteen brokerages that are presently covering the company, Marketbeat reports. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and nine have issued a buy recommendation on the company. The average 12-month price objective among brokerages that have covered the stock in the last year is $57.55.

Several equities analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Barclays lifted their target price on shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from $57.00 to $62.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Wednesday. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $59.00 target price for the company in a research note on Friday, May 17th. Wells Fargo & Co reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $56.00 target price on shares of Hartford Financial Services Group in a research note on Thursday, May 2nd. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 27th. Finally, TheStreet raised shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 14th.

In related news, EVP Robert W. Paiano sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $50.00, for a total transaction of $250,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 33,342 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,667,100. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director Trevor Fetter acquired 10,000 shares of Hartford Financial Services Group stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 9th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $52.19 per share, with a total value of $521,900.00. Following the purchase, the director now owns 50,945 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,658,819.55. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 15,039 shares of company stock valued at $778,412. 1.70% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of HIG. Advantage Investment Management LLC lifted its position in Hartford Financial Services Group by 66.7% during the first quarter. Advantage Investment Management LLC now owns 500 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $25,000 after purchasing an additional 200 shares during the last quarter. Harvest Group Wealth Management LLC bought a new stake in Hartford Financial Services Group during the first quarter valued at approximately $33,000. Icon Wealth Partners LLC bought a new stake in Hartford Financial Services Group during the first quarter valued at approximately $33,000. Pinnacle Bank bought a new stake in Hartford Financial Services Group during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $35,000. Finally, Horan Capital Advisors LLC. bought a new stake in Hartford Financial Services Group during the first quarter valued at approximately $37,000. 91.21% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

HIG opened at $54.21 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $19.41 billion, a PE ratio of 12.52, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.10 and a beta of 0.73. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.27, a current ratio of 0.32 and a quick ratio of 0.32. Hartford Financial Services Group has a twelve month low of $40.54 and a twelve month high of $54.28.

Hartford Financial Services Group (NYSE:HIG) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, May 1st. The insurance provider reported $1.39 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.24 by $0.15. The firm had revenue of $4.94 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.84 billion. Hartford Financial Services Group had a net margin of 9.58% and a return on equity of 12.46%. The company’s revenue was up 5.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.27 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Hartford Financial Services Group will post 5.12 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 1st. Investors of record on Monday, June 3rd will be paid a dividend of $0.30 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, May 31st. This represents a $1.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.21%. Hartford Financial Services Group’s dividend payout ratio is currently 27.71%.

Hartford Financial Services Group declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock repurchase plan on Monday, February 4th that permits the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the insurance provider to reacquire up to 5.9% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are usually an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

About Hartford Financial Services Group

The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides insurance and financial services to individual and business customers in the United States. Its Commercial Lines segment offers workers' compensation, property, automobile, marine, livestock, liability, and umbrella coverages; and customized insurance products and risk management services, including professional liability, bond, surety, and specialty casualty coverages.

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Analyst Recommendations for Hartford Financial Services Group (NYSE:HIG)

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