National General (NGHC) Downgraded to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of National General (NASDAQ:NGHC) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report published on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “National General Holdings Corp. is a specialty personal lines insurance holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides personal and commercial automobile insurance, recreational vehicle and motorcycle insurance, supplemental health insurance products and other niche insurance products. It operates in two segments, Property and Casualty and Accident and Health. The Property and Casualty segment offers standard and preferred automobile and sub-standard automobile insurance policies; Recreational vehicle insurance policies; commercial automobile insurance policies; and motorcycle insurance policies for various types of motorcycles, as well as golf carts and all-terrain vehicles. The Accident and Health segment provides accident and non-major medical health insurance products. National General Holdings Corp. is headquartered in New York. “

NGHC has been the topic of a number of other reports. ValuEngine raised shares of National General from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Thursday, November 1st. BidaskClub raised shares of National General from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, November 13th. Finally, Morgan Stanley set a $30.00 target price on shares of National General and gave the stock a hold rating in a report on Wednesday, November 14th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $29.67.



NGHC opened at $23.87 on Tuesday. The firm has a market capitalization of $2.55 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.90 and a beta of 0.79. National General has a 12-month low of $18.22 and a 12-month high of $28.89.

National General (NASDAQ:NGHC) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 30th. The insurance provider reported $0.65 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.25. The firm had revenue of $1.13 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.11 billion. National General had a net margin of 3.63% and a return on equity of 15.64%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 7.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.26 earnings per share. Equities analysts predict that National General will post 2.13 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, January 1st will be given a dividend of $0.04 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, December 28th. This represents a $0.16 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.67%. National General’s dividend payout ratio is currently 14.68%.

In other news, President Robert Karfunkel purchased 20,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 24th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $23.22 per share, for a total transaction of $464,400.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the president now owns 86,071 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,998,568.62. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CEO Barry Karfunkel purchased 1,148 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 26th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $22.50 per share, with a total value of $25,830.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 134,245 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,020,512.50. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have bought 28,148 shares of company stock valued at $652,840 in the last 90 days. Insiders own 3.40% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in NGHC. BlackRock Inc. grew its position in shares of National General by 23.2% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 4,208,155 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $110,801,000 after acquiring an additional 793,507 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its position in shares of National General by 14.0% during the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 2,692,521 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $70,895,000 after acquiring an additional 330,210 shares during the last quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. grew its position in shares of National General by 1,330.1% during the second quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. now owns 221,100 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $394,000 after acquiring an additional 205,640 shares during the last quarter. Millennium Management LLC bought a new position in shares of National General during the second quarter worth about $4,969,000. Finally, Northern Trust Corp grew its position in shares of National General by 13.7% during the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 1,062,423 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $27,974,000 after acquiring an additional 127,984 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 48.33% of the company’s stock.

About National General

National General Holdings Corp., a specialty personal lines insurance holding company, provides various insurance products and services in the United States. The company operates in two segments, Property and Casualty, and Accident and Health. The Property and Casualty segment offers standard, preferred, and nonstandard automobile insurance products; and recreational vehicle (RV) insurance products that carry RV-specific endorsements comprising automatic personal effects coverage, optional replacement cost coverage, RV storage coverage, and full-time liability coverage.

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