Cetera Advisor Networks LLC increased its stake in shares of AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) by 45.9% in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 16,664 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after buying an additional 5,239 shares during the quarter. Cetera Advisor Networks LLC’s holdings in AFLAC were worth $838,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in AFL. Norges Bank bought a new stake in AFLAC during the fourth quarter worth $260,062,000. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund grew its holdings in AFLAC by 2,138.4% during the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 3,815,741 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $84,000 after buying an additional 3,645,273 shares in the last quarter. Boston Partners grew its holdings in AFLAC by 51.4% during the fourth quarter. Boston Partners now owns 4,914,986 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $223,926,000 after buying an additional 1,668,025 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in AFLAC by 3.1% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 51,647,878 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $2,353,074,000 after buying an additional 1,557,905 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. grew its holdings in AFLAC by 78.9% during the first quarter. Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. now owns 3,155,649 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $157,787,000 after buying an additional 1,392,015 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 67.82% of the company’s stock.
In other AFLAC news, insider Charles D. Lake II sold 15,678 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, March 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $49.19, for a total value of $771,200.82. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 137,764 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $6,776,611.16. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Douglas Wayne Johnson sold 3,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, March 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $49.24, for a total value of $147,720.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 33,035 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,626,643.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 108,410 shares of company stock worth $5,419,338. Insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.
AFLAC (NYSE:AFL) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 25th. The financial services provider reported $1.12 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate 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 for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.46 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $1.05 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 3.5% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, research analysts predict that AFLAC Incorporated will post 4.3 earnings per share for the current year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 3rd. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, May 22nd will be given 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 2.07%. AFLAC’s dividend payout ratio is currently 25.96%.
Several brokerages recently issued reports on AFL. Zacks Investment Research downgraded AFLAC from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, April 18th. UBS Group decreased 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. ValuEngine downgraded AFLAC from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, March 1st. SunTrust Banks upped their price target on AFLAC to $48.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, February 4th. Finally, Raymond James upped their price target on AFLAC from $55.00 to $56.00 and gave the stock a “strong-buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, April 30th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating, two have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $49.80.
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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