ProAssurance (NYSE:PRA) Lifted to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of ProAssurance (NYSE:PRA) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report published on Thursday morning, Zacks.com reports. The firm currently has $17.00 price objective on the insurance provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “ProAssurance’s has been benefiting from strategic acquisitions, which have been accretive to premiums, over the past few quarters. The buyouts and integrations of companies have helped it to enhance financial size and strength. It is also moving toward its joint marketing and shared risk programs. Following the NORCAL buyout, the combined entity is likely to create the nation's third largest specialty writer of liability insurance for healthcare professionals and facilities. Its shares have underperformed its industry in a year. Nevertheless, growing cash flows bode well. However, high expenses have been weighing on margins. Volatility in premium retention in its physician business remains a concern. A major risk is associated with its investment portfolio. Its third-quarter earnings missed estimates due to lower premiums.”

Separately, Bank of America lowered shares of ProAssurance from a buy rating to an underperform rating in a research report on Monday, August 10th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $23.60.

PRA opened at $15.73 on Thursday. The firm has a market cap of $847.69 million, a P/E ratio of -10.28 and a beta of 0.27. ProAssurance has a 1-year low of $12.67 and a 1-year high of $38.18. The company has a 50 day simple moving average of $15.46 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $14.99. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.19, a current ratio of 0.51 and a quick ratio of 0.51.

ProAssurance (NYSE:PRA) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 5th. The insurance provider reported $0.05 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.11 by ($0.06). The firm had revenue of $226.90 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $222.12 million. ProAssurance had a negative return on equity of 5.71% and a negative net margin of 9.04%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 6.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.30 earnings per share. Equities analysts anticipate that ProAssurance will post -0.43 earnings per share for the current year.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Synovus Financial Corp raised its stake in ProAssurance by 103.4% during the second quarter. Synovus Financial Corp now owns 1,940 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $28,000 after purchasing an additional 986 shares in the last quarter. Point72 Hong Kong Ltd purchased a new stake in ProAssurance during the second quarter valued at $40,000. Marshall Wace North America L.P. purchased a new stake in ProAssurance during the first quarter valued at $42,000. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio raised its stake in ProAssurance by 25.5% during the second quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 6,540 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $95,000 after purchasing an additional 1,330 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank raised its stake in shares of ProAssurance by 48.4% in the second quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 7,166 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $104,000 after acquiring an additional 2,336 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 83.17% of the company’s stock.

About ProAssurance

ProAssurance Corporation, through its subsidiaries, provides property and casualty insurance, and reinsurance products in the United States. The company operates through five segments: Specialty Property and Casualty, Workers' Compensation Insurance, Segregated Portfolio Cell Reinsurance, and Lloyd's Syndicate.

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