Principal Financial Group Inc. trimmed its holdings in shares of Essent Group Ltd. (NYSE:ESNT) by 75.8% in the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 15,609 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after selling 48,898 shares during the quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc.’s holdings in Essent Group were worth $580,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Several other large investors have also modified their holdings of ESNT. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in Essent Group by 6,828.8% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 5,844,752 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $211,403,000 after acquiring an additional 5,760,398 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Essent Group by 8.4% in the 1st quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 7,171,835 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $259,405,000 after buying an additional 555,591 shares during the period. Vaughan Nelson Investment Management L.P. purchased a new position in shares of Essent Group in the 2nd quarter valued at about $19,348,000. OppenheimerFunds Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Essent Group in the 1st quarter valued at about $13,415,000. Finally, State Street Corp boosted its stake in shares of Essent Group by 16.6% in the 1st quarter. State Street Corp now owns 2,493,815 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $90,204,000 after buying an additional 355,289 shares during the period. 81.40% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Several equities analysts have recently issued reports on ESNT shares. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Essent Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $41.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Friday, September 8th. BidaskClub cut Essent Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 25th. BTIG Research upgraded Essent Group from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $44.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, September 12th. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods set a $43.00 price objective on Essent Group and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, August 7th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, six have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $44.75.
In other news, SVP Mary Lourdes Gibbons sold 4,600 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $41.04, for a total transaction of $188,784.00. Following the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 262,902 shares in the company, valued at approximately $10,789,498.08. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CFO Lawrence E. Mcalee, Jr. sold 3,118 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $40.00, for a total value of $124,720.00. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 272,167 shares in the company, valued at $10,886,680. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 20,918 shares of company stock worth $832,670. 18.10% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.
Essent Group Ltd. (NYSE:ESNT) opened at 40.52 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $3.79 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.42 and a beta of 1.14. Essent Group Ltd. has a 52-week low of $25.84 and a 52-week high of $41.44. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $39.09 and its 200 day moving average price is $37.79.
Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) last released its earnings results on Friday, August 4th. The financial services provider reported $0.77 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.68 by $0.09. Essent Group had a return on equity of 18.77% and a net margin of 50.92%. The company had revenue of $137.61 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $131.99 million. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.57 EPS. Essent Group’s quarterly revenue was up 27.2% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Essent Group Ltd. will post $3.04 EPS for the current year.
About Essent Group
Essent Group Ltd. is a private mortgage insurance company. The Company is engaged in offering private mortgage insurance and reinsurance for mortgages secured by residential properties located in the United States. Its products and services include mortgage insurance, contract underwriting, and Bermuda-based insurance and reinsurance.
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