Verity & Verity LLC Boosts Holdings in AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL)

Verity & Verity LLC raised its holdings in shares of AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) by 1.3% in the 3rd quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 174,291 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 2,295 shares during the quarter. AFLAC makes up 1.9% of Verity & Verity LLC’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 20th largest position. Verity & Verity LLC’s holdings in AFLAC were worth $8,976,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other large investors have also bought and sold shares of the company. Natixis Advisors L.P. increased its holdings in AFLAC by 1.1% during the 2nd quarter. Natixis Advisors L.P. now owns 56,226 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $3,082,000 after acquiring an additional 639 shares in the last quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp increased its holdings in AFLAC by 21.0% during the 2nd quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp now owns 797,297 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $43,493,000 after acquiring an additional 138,166 shares in the last quarter. Daiwa Securities Group Inc. increased its holdings in AFLAC by 3.2% during the 2nd quarter. Daiwa Securities Group Inc. now owns 42,152 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $2,311,000 after acquiring an additional 1,300 shares in the last quarter. Meridian Wealth Management LLC purchased a new position in AFLAC during the 1st quarter valued at about $60,000. Finally, Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund increased its holdings in AFLAC by 8.6% during the 2nd quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 167,810 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $9,198,000 after acquiring an additional 13,349 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 64.24% of the company’s stock.

Shares of AFLAC stock traded up $0.37 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $52.44. 3,662,979 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 3,259,076. The company has a 50-day simple moving average of $51.14 and a 200 day simple moving average of $52.10. The company has a current ratio of 0.04, a quick ratio of 0.04 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.22. AFLAC Incorporated has a twelve month low of $41.45 and a twelve month high of $57.18. The stock has a market capitalization of $37.79 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.61, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.83 and a beta of 0.71.

AFLAC (NYSE:AFL) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 25th. The financial services provider reported $1.13 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.07 by $0.06. AFLAC had a net margin of 14.24% and a return on equity of 12.94%. The business had revenue of $5.51 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.46 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.07 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts forecast that AFLAC Incorporated will post 4.34 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, Director Barbara K. Rimer sold 4,728 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.74, for a total value of $254,082.72. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 32,448 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,743,755.52. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director Toshihiko Fukuzawa sold 1,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, September 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $52.00, for a total transaction of $78,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 11,349 shares in the company, valued at $590,148. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 15,780 shares of company stock worth $835,628 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.

AFL has been the subject of several recent research reports. UBS Group raised their target price on shares of AFLAC from $51.00 to $53.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday. Barclays dropped their target price on shares of AFLAC from $53.00 to $49.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a report on Friday, August 23rd. Morgan Stanley raised their target price on shares of AFLAC from $53.00 to $54.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a report on Friday, July 26th. ValuEngine cut shares of AFLAC from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 1st. Finally, Bank of America set a $54.00 price target on shares of AFLAC and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, September 27th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $53.62.

About AFLAC

Aflac Incorporated, through its subsidiaries, provides voluntary supplemental health and life insurance products. It operates through two segments, Aflac Japan and Aflac U.S. The Aflac Japan segment offers voluntary supplemental insurance products, including cancer plans, general medical indemnity plans, medical/sickness riders, care plans, living benefit life plans, ordinary life insurance plans, and annuities in Japan.

Further Reading: Sell-Side Analysts

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for AFLAC (NYSE:AFL)

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