Axis Capital Holdings Limited (AXS) Downgraded to Strong Sell at Zacks Investment Research

Axis Capital Holdings Limited (NYSE:AXS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report released on Monday, May 8th.

According to Zacks, “AXIS Capital’s first-quarter 2017 earnings missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate and also deteriorated year over year. Moreover, shares of AXIS Capital have underperformed the Zacks categorized Property and Casualty (P&C) industry since the release of the first-quarter results. Stiff competition in the reinsurance industry slowing growth and lowering profitability along with escalating expenses eating into margins remain concerns. Nonetheless, the company continues to build on its Specialty Insurance, Reinsurance, and Accident and Health to pave way for long-term growth. It remains focused on deploying resources prudently, enhancing efficiencies and better serving clients and brokers across the globe. It has also been improving its portfolio mix and underwriting profitability apart from strengthening the casualty and professional lines in the insurance segment.”

A number of other brokerages have also recently issued reports on AXS. Deutsche Bank AG reissued a “hold” rating and set a $64.00 price objective (down from $66.00) on shares of Axis Capital Holdings Limited in a report on Wednesday, March 15th. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “market perform” rating and set a $67.00 price objective (up from $64.00) on shares of Axis Capital Holdings Limited in a report on Friday, February 3rd. Citigroup Inc lifted their price objective on Axis Capital Holdings Limited from $60.00 to $61.00 and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, April 7th. Wells Fargo & Co cut Axis Capital Holdings Limited from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating in a report on Monday, January 9th. Finally, Macquarie lowered Axis Capital Holdings Limited from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $55.00 target price for the company. in a research note on Tuesday, January 17th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Axis Capital Holdings Limited presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $66.57.

Analyst Recommendations for Axis Capital Holdings Limited (NYSE:AXS)

Axis Capital Holdings Limited (NYSE:AXS) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, April 26th. The insurance provider reported $0.59 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.81 by $0.22. The company had revenue of $1.51 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.69 billion. Axis Capital Holdings Limited had a net margin of 12.82% and a return on equity of 8.36%. The firm’s revenue was down 10.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $1.07 earnings per share.

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Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Janus Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Axis Capital Holdings Limited by 33.8% in the first quarter. Janus Capital Management LLC now owns 420,071 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $28,157,000 after buying an additional 106,200 shares during the last quarter. Tudor Investment Corp ET AL raised its stake in shares of Axis Capital Holdings Limited by 70.8% in the first quarter. Tudor Investment Corp ET AL now owns 10,184 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $683,000 after buying an additional 4,221 shares during the last quarter. Cambria Investment Management L.P. raised its stake in shares of Axis Capital Holdings Limited by 1.2% in the first quarter. Cambria Investment Management L.P. now owns 29,142 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $1,953,000 after buying an additional 355 shares during the last quarter. Jane Street Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Axis Capital Holdings Limited during the first quarter worth approximately $408,000. Finally, State Street Corp raised its stake in shares of Axis Capital Holdings Limited by 2.6% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 3,093,192 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $207,334,000 after buying an additional 79,832 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 90.07% of the company’s stock.

Axis Capital Holdings Limited Company Profile

AXIS Capital Holdings Limited is a holding company. The Company provides a range of specialty (re)insurance, through subsidiaries and branch networks- based in Bermuda, the United States, Canada, Europe and Singapore. Its business consists of two global underwriting platforms: AXIS Insurance and AXIS Re.

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