Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) Shares Purchased by AlphaCrest Capital Management LLC

AlphaCrest Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFLGet Rating) by 332.5% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 33,249 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 25,562 shares during the period. AlphaCrest Capital Management LLC’s holdings in Aflac were worth $1,840,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of the business. National Asset Management Inc. grew its holdings in Aflac by 26.8% during the 1st quarter. National Asset Management Inc. now owns 5,282 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $341,000 after buying an additional 1,115 shares during the last quarter. Waldron Private Wealth LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Aflac during the first quarter valued at $201,000. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. increased its position in Aflac by 13.1% during the 1st quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 287,635 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $18,521,000 after purchasing an additional 33,301 shares in the last quarter. Gladstone Institutional Advisory LLC acquired a new position in Aflac in the 1st quarter valued at about $422,000. Finally, Ropes Wealth Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in Aflac by 5.9% in the 1st quarter. Ropes Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 5,390 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $347,000 after purchasing an additional 300 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 66.32% of the company’s stock.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

A number of equities research analysts have recently commented on the stock. Morgan Stanley lifted their price target on shares of Aflac from $69.00 to $72.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Thursday, November 17th. Royal Bank of Canada boosted their price target on Aflac from $66.00 to $68.00 and gave the company a “sector perform” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 2nd. Piper Sandler increased their price target on Aflac from $73.00 to $80.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Friday, November 18th. StockNews.com initiated coverage on Aflac in a research report on Wednesday, October 12th. They issued a “hold” rating for the company. Finally, Raymond James increased their target price on Aflac from $67.00 to $70.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, October 31st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. According to MarketBeat, Aflac presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $65.58.

Insider Transactions at Aflac

In related news, Director Toshihiko Fukuzawa sold 1,400 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.64, for a total value of $98,896.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 10,258 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $724,625.12. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. In other Aflac news, Director Toshihiko Fukuzawa sold 1,400 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.64, for a total transaction of $98,896.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 10,258 shares in the company, valued at $724,625.12. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, EVP Eric M. Kirsch sold 28,400 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.90, for a total value of $2,013,560.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 35,721 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,532,618.90. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 52,500 shares of company stock valued at $3,715,467. 1.10% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Aflac Price Performance

AFL opened at $72.00 on Thursday. Aflac Incorporated has a twelve month low of $52.07 and a twelve month high of $72.54. The firm has a market cap of $44.77 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.18, a PEG ratio of 2.72 and a beta of 0.93. The company has a current ratio of 0.07, a quick ratio of 0.07 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.31. The company has a fifty day simple moving average of $62.60 and a 200 day simple moving average of $59.57.

Aflac (NYSE:AFLGet Rating) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, November 1st. The financial services provider reported $1.15 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.22 by ($0.07). Aflac had a net margin of 24.16% and a return on equity of 12.53%. The business had revenue of $4.82 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.58 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.53 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 8.0% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Aflac Incorporated will post 5.25 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Aflac Increases Dividend

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, March 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, February 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.42 per share. This is a boost from Aflac’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.40. This represents a $1.68 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.33%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, February 14th. Aflac’s dividend payout ratio is 20.41%.

Aflac announced that its board has authorized a stock repurchase plan on Tuesday, November 8th that allows the company to buyback 100,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization allows the financial services provider to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are typically an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

About Aflac

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Aflac Incorporated, through its subsidiaries, provides supplemental health and life insurance products. It operates through two segments, Aflac Japan and Aflac U.S. The Aflac Japan segment offers cancer, medical, nursing care income support, GIFT, and whole and term life insurance products, as well as WAYS and child endowment plans under saving type insurance products in Japan.

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