Lazard Asset Management LLC bought a new stake in Assurant, Inc. (NYSE:AIZ) in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm bought 10,042 shares of the financial services provider’s stock, valued at approximately $1,012,000.
A number of other large investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Ascend Capital LLC acquired a new stake in Assurant in the fourth quarter valued at $3,048,000. Hudson Bay Capital Management LP acquired a new stake in Assurant in the fourth quarter valued at $6,083,000. Quadrature Capital Ltd acquired a new stake in Assurant in the fourth quarter valued at $475,000. Eaton Vance Management acquired a new stake in Assurant in the fourth quarter valued at $1,039,000. Finally, First Republic Investment Management Inc. raised its stake in Assurant by 4.2% in the fourth quarter. First Republic Investment Management Inc. now owns 79,244 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $7,991,000 after buying an additional 3,163 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 92.97% of the company’s stock.
Shares of Assurant, Inc. (NYSE AIZ) opened at $90.81 on Monday. Assurant, Inc. has a 52 week low of $84.34 and a 52 week high of $106.99. The company has a quick ratio of 0.55, a current ratio of 0.55 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.25. The firm has a market capitalization of $4,765.29, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.05, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.59 and a beta of 0.63.
Assurant (NYSE:AIZ) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 8th. The financial services provider reported $1.84 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.58 by $0.26. Assurant had a return on equity of 5.24% and a net margin of 8.10%. The company had revenue of $1.68 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.59 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.54 earnings per share. Assurant’s quarterly revenue was down 4.3% on a year-over-year basis. equities research analysts predict that Assurant, Inc. will post 7.93 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, March 19th. Stockholders of record on Monday, February 26th will be given a dividend of $0.56 per share. This represents a $2.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.47%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, February 23rd. Assurant’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 23.83%.
A number of analysts have weighed in on the company. ValuEngine upgraded Assurant from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 7th. UBS Group assumed coverage on Assurant in a research note on Friday, March 2nd. They issued a “buy” rating and a $127.00 price target on the stock.
Assurant, Inc is a provider of risk management solutions in the housing and lifestyle markets. The Company operates in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. The Company’s segments include Global Housing, Global Lifestyle and Global Preneed. Through its Global Housing segment, it provides lender-placed homeowners, manufactured housing and flood insurance; renters insurance and related products (multi-family housing business), and field services, valuation services and other property risk management services (mortgage solutions business).
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