RLI (RLI) Upgraded at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of RLI (NYSE:RLI) from a strong sell rating to a hold rating in a research note released on Tuesday, December 19th.

According to Zacks, “RLI Corp. boasts one of the industry’s most profitable P&C writers with an impressive track record of underwriting profits in 37 of the past 41 years (particularly the last 21 years). Its ability to consistently increase dividend, announce special dividends, maintain combined ratios at favorable levels as well as a solid capital position are other positives. Continuous strategic investments to fortify Casualty segment bode well. The company also remains focused on strengthening its underwriting results and has decided to drop underperforming products in the property business. The company witnessed its Zacks Consensus Estimate   for 2017 over the last 60 days. Shares of RLI Corp have underperformed the industry year to date. Exposure to catastrophe loss and escalating expenses raise concerns.”

A number of other analysts have also issued reports on the company. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reaffirmed a hold rating and issued a $55.00 target price on shares of RLI in a report on Wednesday, December 6th. B. Riley reiterated a neutral rating on shares of RLI in a research report on Monday, November 6th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reiterated an underperform rating and issued a $51.00 price objective (up previously from $50.00) on shares of RLI in a research report on Friday, October 20th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $57.67.

RLI (RLI) traded up $0.13 on Tuesday, hitting $59.63. The stock had a trading volume of 78,586 shares, compared to its average volume of 151,678. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.17, a current ratio of 0.35 and a quick ratio of 0.35. The stock has a market cap of $2,630.00, a P/E ratio of 33.13 and a beta of 1.30. RLI has a 52 week low of $50.34 and a 52 week high of $62.00.

RLI (NYSE:RLI) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 18th. The insurance provider reported $0.04 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.48 by ($0.44). The company had revenue of $196.20 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $195.89 million. RLI had a net margin of 9.97% and a return on equity of 8.53%. The business’s revenue was down 4.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.37 EPS. equities analysts forecast that RLI will post 1.56 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a special dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, December 27th. Investors of record on Thursday, November 30th were given a dividend of $1.75 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, November 29th. This represents a dividend yield of 1.42%. RLI’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 46.67%.

In other news, Director Robert P. Restrepo, Jr. bought 1,026 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 13th. The stock was bought at an average cost of $59.30 per share, with a total value of $60,841.80. Following the purchase, the director now owns 8,026 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $475,941.80. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director Michael J. Stone sold 2,000 shares of RLI stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $60.33, for a total value of $120,660.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 5,141 shares of company stock valued at $307,795 in the last 90 days. 6.09% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in RLI. State Street Corp grew its stake in shares of RLI by 2.4% during the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 6,297,222 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $343,954,000 after purchasing an additional 145,202 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its stake in shares of RLI by 1.1% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 4,208,225 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $229,853,000 after purchasing an additional 45,127 shares during the period. Neuberger Berman Group LLC grew its stake in shares of RLI by 0.7% during the second quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 2,437,870 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $133,156,000 after purchasing an additional 15,876 shares during the period. Kayne Anderson Rudnick Investment Management LLC grew its stake in shares of RLI by 3.2% during the third quarter. Kayne Anderson Rudnick Investment Management LLC now owns 1,712,682 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $98,240,000 after purchasing an additional 53,112 shares during the period. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its stake in shares of RLI by 3.2% during the third quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,073,775 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $61,593,000 after purchasing an additional 33,357 shares during the period. 83.58% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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RLI Company Profile

RLI Corp. is a specialty insurance company. The Company underwrites selected property and casualty insurance through subsidiaries, as well as offers insurance coverages in both the specialty admitted, and excess and surplus markets. It operates through Casualty, Property and Surety segments. Its Casualty segment consists of commercial and personal umbrella, general liability, commercial transportation, professional services, small commercial, executive products, medical professional liability and other casualty businesses.

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