The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE:HIG) Receives Consensus Recommendation of “Buy” from Analysts

Shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE:HIG) have been assigned a consensus rating of “Buy” from the sixteen research firms that are presently covering the stock, Marketbeat Ratings reports. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. The average 12-month target price among brokerages that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $76.33.

A number of research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Jefferies Financial Group assumed coverage on shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group in a research note on Thursday, November 18th. They set a “hold” rating and a $81.00 price objective for the company. The Goldman Sachs Group started coverage on shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group in a research note on Monday, November 22nd. They set a “buy” rating and a $84.00 price objective for the company. Morgan Stanley started coverage on shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group in a research note on Friday, October 15th. They issued an “equal weight” rating for the company. Wolfe Research started coverage on shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group in a research note on Monday, August 16th. They issued a “peer perform” rating and a $74.00 target price for the company. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada lifted their target price on shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group from $68.00 to $77.00 and gave the stock a “sector perform” rating in a research note on Monday, November 1st.

In related news, EVP Jonathan R. Bennett sold 20,593 shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group stock in a transaction on Friday, October 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $75.00, for a total transaction of $1,544,475.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, EVP David C. Robinson sold 5,469 shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group stock in a transaction on Monday, October 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.85, for a total transaction of $387,478.65. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.55% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in HIG. FMR LLC increased its position in shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group by 36.2% in the 2nd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 14,307,410 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $886,630,000 after purchasing an additional 3,802,775 shares during the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. increased its position in shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group by 458.8% in the 2nd quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 2,479,622 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $153,662,000 after purchasing an additional 2,035,885 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. increased its position in shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group by 6.9% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 27,397,323 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $1,697,811,000 after purchasing an additional 1,773,117 shares during the last quarter. Amundi bought a new stake in shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group during the 2nd quarter valued at about $73,281,000. Finally, Marathon Asset Mgmt Ltd bought a new stake in shares of The Hartford Financial Services Group during the 3rd quarter valued at about $80,243,000. 90.86% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Shares of HIG opened at $67.06 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.28, a current ratio of 0.31 and a quick ratio of 0.31. The firm has a 50 day simple moving average of $71.54 and a 200-day simple moving average of $67.43. The Hartford Financial Services Group has a 1-year low of $44.76 and a 1-year high of $78.17. The stock has a market cap of $22.82 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.16, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.74 and a beta of 1.07.

The Hartford Financial Services Group (NYSE:HIG) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 28th. The insurance provider reported $1.26 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.86 by $0.40. The Hartford Financial Services Group had a net margin of 9.92% and a return on equity of 11.95%. The business had revenue of $5.69 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.25 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.46 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 10.0% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts expect that The Hartford Financial Services Group will post 5.69 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 4th. Investors of record on Wednesday, December 1st will be issued a dividend of $0.385 per share. This is a positive change from The Hartford Financial Services Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.35. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 30th. This represents a $1.54 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.30%. The Hartford Financial Services Group’s payout ratio is presently 25.62%.

About The Hartford Financial Services Group

The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc is an insurance and financial services company. The company provides life insurance, group and employee benefits, automobile and homeowners insurance and business insurance, as well as investment products, annuities, mutual funds, and college savings plans. It operates through the following segments: Commercial Lines, Personal Lines, Property & Casualty Other Operations, Group Benefits and Hartford Funds.

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Analyst Recommendations for The Hartford Financial Services Group (NYSE:HIG)