Short Interest in Sun Life Financial Inc (NYSE:SLF) Decreases By 22.0%

Sun Life Financial Inc (NYSE:SLF) (TSE:SLF) was the recipient of a large decline in short interest in the month of August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 1,638,900 shares, a decline of 22.0% from the July 31st total of 2,101,000 shares. Currently, 0.3% of the shares of the company are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 552,600 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 3.0 days.

SLF has been the subject of several analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Sun Life Financial from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $45.00 target price for the company in a research note on Thursday, July 4th. Argus boosted their target price on shares of Sun Life Financial from $42.00 to $45.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, July 1st. Barclays reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Sun Life Financial in a research note on Monday, August 26th. ValuEngine cut shares of Sun Life Financial from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 1st. Finally, Evercore ISI reiterated an “outperform” rating on shares of Sun Life Financial in a research note on Monday, July 22nd. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $51.50.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of SLF. Beutel Goodman & Co Ltd. increased its holdings in Sun Life Financial by 101.6% in the 2nd quarter. Beutel Goodman & Co Ltd. now owns 28,635,836 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $1,143,296,000 after acquiring an additional 14,428,268 shares in the last quarter. CIBC Asset Management Inc increased its holdings in Sun Life Financial by 17.4% in the 1st quarter. CIBC Asset Management Inc now owns 6,374,052 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $244,877,000 after acquiring an additional 944,977 shares in the last quarter. National Pension Service purchased a new stake in Sun Life Financial in the 2nd quarter worth $45,753,000. BRITISH COLUMBIA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Corp purchased a new stake in Sun Life Financial in the 1st quarter worth $41,901,000. Finally, USS Investment Management Ltd purchased a new stake in Sun Life Financial in the 2nd quarter worth $26,960,000. 44.92% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

NYSE SLF traded up $0.26 on Friday, hitting $44.08. The company had a trading volume of 462,486 shares, compared to its average volume of 520,558. The company has a market capitalization of $26.09 billion, a PE ratio of 11.75 and a beta of 0.90. The company’s fifty day moving average price is $40.74 and its 200-day moving average price is $40.18. Sun Life Financial has a 12-month low of $31.49 and a 12-month high of $44.24.

Sun Life Financial (NYSE:SLF) (TSE:SLF) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 31st. The financial services provider reported $1.24 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.94 by $0.30. The company had revenue of $7.59 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $6.93 billion. Sun Life Financial had a net margin of 6.83% and a return on equity of 13.37%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $1.20 EPS. As a group, equities research analysts predict that Sun Life Financial will post 3.81 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, September 30th. Investors of record on Wednesday, August 28th will be issued a $0.401 dividend. This represents a $1.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.64%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, August 27th. This is a positive change from Sun Life Financial’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.38. Sun Life Financial’s payout ratio is presently 42.40%.

About Sun Life Financial

Sun Life Financial Inc, a financial services company, provides insurance, wealth, and asset management solutions to individuals and corporate clients worldwide. The company operates through five segments: Sun Life Financial Canada, Sun Life Financial United States, Sun Life Financial Asset Management, Sun Life Financial Asia, and Corporate.

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