Argo Group International (NYSE:ARGO) Shares Gap Up Following Earnings Beat

Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. (NYSE:ARGO) shares gapped up before the market opened on Tuesday following a better than expected earnings announcement. The stock had previously closed at $52.90, but opened at $54.73. Argo Group International shares last traded at $54.73, with a volume of 10 shares traded.

The company reported $0.44 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of ($0.02) by $0.46. Argo Group International had a negative return on equity of 4.54% and a negative net margin of 8.49%.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 12th. Investors of record on Friday, February 26th were paid a dividend of $0.31 per share. This represents a $1.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.26%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, February 25th. Argo Group International’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently -137.78%.

A number of research analysts recently weighed in on ARGO shares. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Argo Group International from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 28th. Compass Point reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and set a $60.00 price target on shares of Argo Group International in a research note on Wednesday, April 28th. HSBC upped their price target on Argo Group International to $10.25 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, March 15th. Raymond James upped their price target on Argo Group International from $55.00 to $60.00 and gave the stock a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Monday, March 22nd. Finally, Boenning Scattergood reaffirmed a “neutral” rating on shares of Argo Group International in a research note on Monday, April 19th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, one has issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Argo Group International currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $42.31.

Institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. purchased a new stake in shares of Argo Group International in the fourth quarter worth approximately $1,505,000. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC increased its position in shares of Argo Group International by 11.8% during the fourth quarter. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC now owns 1,164,305 shares of the company’s stock valued at $50,880,000 after acquiring an additional 123,023 shares during the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its position in shares of Argo Group International by 16.5% during the fourth quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 159,302 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,958,000 after acquiring an additional 22,607 shares during the last quarter. Sapience Investments LLC increased its position in shares of Argo Group International by 3.0% during the fourth quarter. Sapience Investments LLC now owns 227,286 shares of the company’s stock valued at $9,932,000 after acquiring an additional 6,690 shares during the last quarter. Finally, KBC Group NV purchased a new stake in shares of Argo Group International during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $104,000. 89.37% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

The company has a quick ratio of 0.57, a current ratio of 0.57 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.23. The company has a market capitalization of $1.91 billion, a PE ratio of -11.82 and a beta of 0.90. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $52.38 and a 200 day moving average of $46.30.

About Argo Group International (NYSE:ARGO)

Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. underwrites specialty insurance and reinsurance products in the property and casualty markets. The company operates in two segments, U.S. Operations and International Operations. It offers primary and excess specialty casualty, contract liability, commercial multi-peril, product liability, environmental liability, and auto liability insurance products; workers compensation, general liability, auto liability, and various public entity liability risks; management liability, and errors and omissions liability; and surety and inland marine insurance products.

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