Aflac Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) – SunTrust Banks raised their FY2017 earnings estimates for Aflac in a report released on Thursday. SunTrust Banks analyst M. Hughes now expects that the financial services provider will earn $6.81 per share for the year, up from their previous estimate of $6.61. SunTrust Banks also issued estimates for Aflac’s Q2 2018 earnings at $1.71 EPS, Q4 2018 earnings at $1.61 EPS and FY2018 earnings at $6.80 EPS.

Aflac (NYSE:AFL) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The financial services provider reported $1.70 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.63 by $0.07. The business had revenue of $5.51 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.48 billion. Aflac had a return on equity of 12.87% and a net margin of 12.49%. Aflac’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.74 EPS. ILLEGAL ACTIVITY NOTICE: This news story was reported by American Banking News and is owned by of American Banking News. If you are viewing this news story on another domain, it was copied illegally and republished in violation of international copyright and trademark legislation. The legal version of this news story can be read at https://www.americanbankingnews.com/2017/10/30/suntrust-banks-weighs-in-on-aflac-incorporateds-fy2017-earnings-afl.html.

AFL has been the subject of several other reports. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Aflac from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $94.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Thursday, September 21st. FBR & Co reaffirmed a “market perform” rating and set a $80.00 price objective (up from $68.00) on shares of Aflac in a research note on Wednesday, July 12th. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) assumed coverage on shares of Aflac in a research note on Wednesday, October 18th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $88.00 price objective for the company. UBS AG reaffirmed an “overweight” rating on shares of Aflac in a research note on Thursday, August 24th. Finally, Barclays PLC upped their price objective on shares of Aflac from $71.00 to $73.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Monday, July 3rd. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $79.63.

Aflac (AFL) opened at 83.94 on Monday. Aflac has a 12 month low of $66.50 and a 12 month high of $85.70. The company has a market capitalization of $33.18 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.69 and a beta of 0.96. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $83.22 and its 200 day moving average price is $78.86.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 1st. Investors of record on Wednesday, November 15th will be paid a $0.45 dividend. This is an increase from Aflac’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.43. This represents a $1.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.14%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, November 14th. Aflac’s dividend payout ratio is presently 24.93%.

Aflac announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share buyback program on Tuesday, August 8th that allows the company to repurchase 40,000,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the financial services provider to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are typically an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

In other Aflac news, insider Audrey B. Tillman sold 310 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, October 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $83.57, for a total value of $25,906.70. Following the sale, the insider now owns 41,937 shares in the company, valued at $3,504,675.09. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider James Todd Daniels sold 620 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, September 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $81.49, for a total transaction of $50,523.80. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 15,454 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,259,346.46. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 32,209 shares of company stock valued at $2,688,390. 3.00% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Keybank National Association OH grew its holdings in Aflac by 242.1% in the second quarter. Keybank National Association OH now owns 128,219 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $9,960,000 after purchasing an additional 90,741 shares during the period. New Amsterdam Partners LLC NY purchased a new stake in Aflac in the second quarter worth about $531,000. Delta Lloyd Asset Management N.V. purchased a new stake in Aflac in the second quarter worth about $3,306,000. Coho Partners Ltd. grew its holdings in Aflac by 85.3% in the second quarter. Coho Partners Ltd. now owns 2,186,934 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $169,881,000 after purchasing an additional 1,006,477 shares during the period. Finally, Stephens Inc. AR grew its holdings in Aflac by 12.5% in the second quarter. Stephens Inc. AR now owns 55,764 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $4,332,000 after purchasing an additional 6,208 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 65.83% of the company’s stock.

About Aflac

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.

Earnings History and Estimates for Aflac (NYSE:AFL)

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