AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) saw a large increase in short interest in the month of September. As of September 15th, there was short interest totalling 10,660,000 shares, an increase of 20.3% from the August 31st total of 8,860,000 shares. Approximately 1.6% of the shares of the company are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 3,540,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 3.0 days.
In related news, Director Charles D. Lake II sold 16,392 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $37.32, for a total value of $611,749.44. Following the transaction, the director now owns 83,540 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,117,712.80. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Karole Lloyd purchased 1,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 14th. The stock was bought at an average price of $38.13 per share, for a total transaction of $38,130.00. Following the purchase, the director now owns 33,085 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,261,531.05. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 1.40% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Enterprise Financial Services Corp lifted its stake in AFLAC by 11.6% in the 1st quarter. Enterprise Financial Services Corp now owns 3,096 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $106,000 after purchasing an additional 321 shares during the last quarter. IFP Advisors Inc lifted its stake in AFLAC by 9.5% in the 2nd quarter. IFP Advisors Inc now owns 3,944 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $138,000 after purchasing an additional 342 shares during the last quarter. Tanaka Capital Management Inc. lifted its stake in AFLAC by 1.3% in the 2nd quarter. Tanaka Capital Management Inc. now owns 30,616 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,103,000 after purchasing an additional 390 shares during the last quarter. Advisory Resource Group lifted its stake in AFLAC by 1.2% in the 2nd quarter. Advisory Resource Group now owns 35,032 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,262,000 after purchasing an additional 403 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Smithfield Trust Co. lifted its stake in AFLAC by 16.3% in the 2nd quarter. Smithfield Trust Co. now owns 3,070 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $110,000 after purchasing an additional 430 shares during the last quarter. 66.35% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Shares of AFLAC stock traded up $0.49 on Friday, reaching $36.88. 2,973,975 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 4,124,238. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $36.91 and its 200-day moving average is $35.85. AFLAC has a one year low of $23.07 and a one year high of $55.07. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.26, a quick ratio of 0.07 and a current ratio of 0.07. The firm has a market cap of $26.29 billion, a PE ratio of 9.22, a P/E/G ratio of 1.58 and a beta of 0.82.
AFLAC (NYSE:AFL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 28th. The financial services provider reported $1.28 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.05 by $0.23. The company had revenue of $5.41 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.49 billion. AFLAC had a net margin of 13.50% and a return on equity of 11.98%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 1.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.13 EPS. On average, equities research analysts expect that AFLAC will post 4.62 EPS for the current fiscal year.
A number of research analysts recently commented on the stock. Morgan Stanley upped their price target on shares of AFLAC from $42.00 to $45.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 29th. ValuEngine lowered shares of AFLAC from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report on Monday, August 3rd. SunTrust Banks decreased their target price on shares of AFLAC from $44.00 to $37.00 and set a “hold” rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, July 30th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group increased their target price on shares of AFLAC from $35.00 to $40.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 22nd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $44.22.
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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