Employers (EIG) Upgraded to “Buy” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Employers (NYSE:EIG) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note issued to investors on Monday morning. They currently have $50.00 target price on the financial services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Employers Holdings, Inc. is a specialty provider of workers compensation insurance focused on select small businesses engaged in low to medium hazard industries. It markets its products through independent local, regional, and national agents and brokers, as well as through its strategic partnerships and alliances and relationships with national, regional, and local trade groups and associations. Employers Holdings, Inc. is headquartered in Reno, Nevada. “

Separately, Boenning Scattergood raised shares of Employers from a neutral rating to an outperform rating and set a $47.00 target price for the company in a research note on Thursday, October 25th.

Shares of EIG opened at $44.32 on Monday. The firm has a market cap of $1.50 billion, a PE ratio of 15.34 and a beta of 0.65. Employers has a 12-month low of $38.35 and a 12-month high of $47.97.

Employers (NYSE:EIG) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, February 20th. The financial services provider reported $1.31 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.69 by $0.62. The firm had revenue of $205.80 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $198.98 million. Employers had a net margin of 17.89% and a return on equity of 13.43%. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.06 earnings per share. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that Employers will post 3.49 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, March 20th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, March 6th will be paid a dividend of $0.22 per share. This is a positive change from Employers’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.20. This represents a $0.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.99%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, March 5th. Employers’s payout ratio is currently 27.68%.

In related news, EVP Lenard T. Ormsby sold 3,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $42.29, for a total value of $126,870.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 22,681 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $959,179.49. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 3.00% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Piedmont Investment Advisors Inc. lifted its stake in Employers by 3.5% in the fourth quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors Inc. now owns 7,795 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $327,000 after acquiring an additional 263 shares during the period. State of Alaska Department of Revenue lifted its stake in Employers by 2.8% in the fourth quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 15,357 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $643,000 after acquiring an additional 420 shares during the period. First Quadrant L P CA lifted its stake in Employers by 1.4% in the fourth quarter. First Quadrant L P CA now owns 35,486 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $1,489,000 after acquiring an additional 502 shares during the period. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank lifted its stake in Employers by 27.2% in the fourth quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 2,555 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $107,000 after acquiring an additional 547 shares during the period. Finally, Victory Capital Management Inc. lifted its stake in Employers by 4.1% in the fourth quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 15,060 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $632,000 after acquiring an additional 587 shares during the period. 80.54% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Employers

Employers Holdings, Inc, through its subsidiaries, operates in the commercial property and casualty insurance industry primarily in the United States. It offers workers' compensation insurance to small businesses in low to medium hazard industries. The company markets its products through independent local, regional, and national agents and brokers; and alternative distribution channels comprising its partners, as well as through national, regional, and local trade groups and associations.

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