Aperio Group LLC Raises Stake in Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFL)

Aperio Group LLC raised its position in shares of Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) by 22.8% during the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 475,554 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after buying an additional 88,346 shares during the period. Aperio Group LLC owned about 0.12% of Aflac worth $36,941,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the stock. Auxier Asset Management raised its position in Aflac by 11.6% in the fourth quarter. Auxier Asset Management now owns 77,920 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $5,423,000 after buying an additional 8,100 shares in the last quarter. Pegasus Partners Ltd. raised its position in Aflac by 16.4% in the fourth quarter. Pegasus Partners Ltd. now owns 9,822 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $684,000 after buying an additional 1,387 shares in the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC raised its position in Aflac by 0.3% in the fourth quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 794,930 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $55,327,000 after buying an additional 2,226 shares in the last quarter. Kentucky Retirement Systems acquired a new position in Aflac during the fourth quarter worth approximately $2,061,000. Finally, Kentucky Retirement Systems Insurance Trust Fund acquired a new position in Aflac during the fourth quarter worth approximately $920,000. Institutional investors own 64.59% of the company’s stock.

Aflac Incorporated (NYSE AFL) traded up 0.01% during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $79.84. 1,397,338 shares of the company were exchanged. Aflac Incorporated has a 12 month low of $66.50 and a 12 month high of $81.89. The stock has a market capitalization of $31.56 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.07 and a beta of 0.99. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $79.07 and its 200-day moving average price is $74.87.

Aflac (NYSE:AFL) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The financial services provider reported $1.83 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.63 by $0.20. The firm had revenue of $5.43 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.48 billion. Aflac had a net margin of 11.98% and a return on equity of 13.09%. Aflac’s quarterly revenue was down .2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.65 EPS. On average, equities analysts expect that Aflac Incorporated will post $6.69 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Aflac declared that its board has authorized a stock buyback plan on Tuesday, August 8th that allows the company to buyback 40,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization allows the financial services provider to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, August 23rd will be given a dividend of $0.43 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, August 21st. This represents a $1.72 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.15%. Aflac’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 25.94%.

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AFL has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Aflac from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 20th. Royal Bank Of Canada restated an “underperform” rating and issued a $66.00 price objective (up from $62.00) on shares of Aflac in a research note on Monday, May 1st. Barclays PLC boosted their price target on shares of Aflac from $71.00 to $73.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Monday, July 3rd. Bank of America Corporation upgraded shares of Aflac from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and boosted their price target for the stock from $75.00 to $78.00 in a research note on Tuesday, July 4th. Finally, FBR & Co reiterated a “market perform” rating and set a $80.00 price target (up from $68.00) on shares of Aflac in a research note on Wednesday, July 12th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $76.50.

In other Aflac news, Director Karole Lloyd acquired 1,000 shares of Aflac stock in a transaction dated Monday, June 12th. The stock was bought at an average price of $77.01 per share, for a total transaction of $77,010.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 7,253 shares in the company, valued at approximately $558,553.53. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, President Kriss Cloninger III sold 2,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $77.72, for a total transaction of $194,300.00. Following the transaction, the president now owns 241,646 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $18,780,727.12. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 240,203 shares of company stock valued at $18,612,224. Insiders own 3.00% of the company’s stock.

Aflac Company Profile

Aflac Incorporated is a business holding company. The Company is involved in supplemental health and life insurance, which is marketed and administered through its subsidiary, American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus (Aflac). The Company’s insurance business consists of two segments: Aflac Japan and Aflac U.S.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Aflac (NYSE:AFL)

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