Torchmark Corp. (NYSE:TMK) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Tuesday.
According to Zacks, “Torchmark’s niche market focus, steady capital deployment and strong operating fundamentals should drive long-term growth. It estimates life and health sales growth in distribution channels. Also, a strong capital position and robust capital management are key positives. It expects 2016 life-underwriting margin to increase 1%–2% over 2015 while for health the same is estimated to 1-2%. Concurrently, Torchmark expects 2016 net operating income between $4.40 and $4.50 per share, an 80% increase over 2015 at the midpoint. Notably, it delivered positive surprises in three of the last four quarters, with an average beat of 0.7%. However, higher administrative expenses, pension costs and investments in IT systems will likely be a drag on earnings in the near term. Also, low interest rate environment will continue to impact investment income. The Zacks Consensus estimate saw no estimate revisions, for 2016 and 2017, over the last 60 days.”
Other research analysts also recently issued reports about the stock. Evercore ISI initiated coverage on shares of Torchmark Corp. in a research report on Wednesday, July 6th. They set a “hold” rating and a $63.00 price objective on the stock. Deutsche Bank AG lifted their target price on shares of Torchmark Corp. from $56.00 to $59.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, July 29th. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. upgraded shares of Torchmark Corp. from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their target price for the company from $54.00 to $60.00 in a research note on Friday, July 15th. Citigroup Inc. lifted their target price on shares of Torchmark Corp. from $58.00 to $60.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 7th. Finally, Bank of America Corp. upgraded shares of Torchmark Corp. from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 29th. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and eight have assigned a hold rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $58.36.
Shares of Torchmark Corp. (NYSE:TMK) opened at 64.72 on Tuesday. The company’s 50-day moving average is $64.02 and its 200-day moving average is $60.37. The firm has a market capitalization of $7.75 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.89 and a beta of 1.06. Torchmark Corp. has a 12-month low of $48.47 and a 12-month high of $65.60.
Torchmark Corp. (NYSE:TMK) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 27th. The company reported $1.11 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.09 by $0.02. Torchmark Corp. had a net margin of 13.85% and a return on equity of 12.19%. The firm had revenue of $992 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $979.43 million. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.05 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 4.3% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts forecast that Torchmark Corp. will post $4.45 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Investors of record on Friday, October 7th will be paid a dividend of $0.14 per share. This represents a $0.56 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.87%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, October 5th. Torchmark Corp.’s payout ratio is currently 12.84%.
In other news, Chairman Gary L. Coleman sold 37,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.06, for a total value of $2,327,250.00. Following the sale, the chairman now owns 625,581 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $38,823,556.86. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Bill Leavell sold 25,200 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.08, for a total transaction of $1,564,416.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 45,534 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,826,750.72. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 3.96% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.
Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Williams Jones & Associates LLC purchased a new stake in Torchmark Corp. during the second quarter valued at $227,000. Kentucky Retirement Systems Insurance Trust Fund purchased a new stake in Torchmark Corp. during the second quarter valued at $280,000. Kentucky Retirement Systems purchased a new stake in Torchmark Corp. during the second quarter valued at $590,000. Mason Street Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Torchmark Corp. during the second quarter valued at $934,000. Finally, Calvert Investment Management Inc. purchased a new stake in Torchmark Corp. during the second quarter valued at $536,000. 75.52% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Torchmark Corp. Company Profile
Torchmark Corporation is an insurance holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides a range of life and health insurance products and annuities to a broad base of customers. The Company’s segments include life insurance, health insurance, annuities and investment. The life insurance segment offers whole-life insurance and term life insurance.
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