AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. (AFSI) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research to Sell

AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:AFSI) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued on Wednesday, October 18th.

According to Zacks, “Shares of AmTrust Financial have underperformed the industry year to date. Moreover, the company did not witness any estimate revisions for 2017 and 2018 over the last 60 days. A high level of debt increases interest burden and escalates expenses, thereby, hurting margin. Exposure to cat environment induced volatility in underwriting results. The company estimates third-quarter catastrophe loss between $40 million and $65 million. AmTrust Financial’s leadership position in commercial small business, expansion of other segments and an impressive inorganic growth story poise it well for growth. The company also aims to build an investment portfolio that returns in line with the sector. The slow but improving rate environment also raises optimism. Plus, a strong balance sheet facilitates growth initiatives and effective capital deployment.  “



AFSI has been the topic of several other research reports. BidaskClub upgraded AmTrust Financial Services from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, June 29th. ValuEngine cut AmTrust Financial Services from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, September 1st. JMP Securities assumed coverage on AmTrust Financial Services in a report on Friday, July 7th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $18.00 price target on the stock. Finally, TheStreet cut AmTrust Financial Services from a “c” rating to a “d” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 19th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $17.50.

AmTrust Financial Services (NASDAQ AFSI) traded up 0.200% during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $12.515. 239,103 shares of the stock were exchanged. AmTrust Financial Services has a 12-month low of $11.36 and a 12-month high of $28.48. The stock has a market cap of $2.45 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.162 and a beta of 1.24. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $13.22 and a 200-day moving average of $14.14.

AmTrust Financial Services (NASDAQ:AFSI) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, August 8th. The insurance provider reported $0.40 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.36 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $1.37 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.38 billion. AmTrust Financial Services had a return on equity of 14.26% and a net margin of 5.14%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.77 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts expect that AmTrust Financial Services will post $1.18 earnings per share for the current year.

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Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Paragon Capital Management Ltd acquired a new stake in shares of AmTrust Financial Services during the third quarter worth about $165,000. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. raised its position in shares of AmTrust Financial Services by 4.0% during the second quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. now owns 13,181 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $200,000 after purchasing an additional 506 shares during the period. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company raised its position in shares of AmTrust Financial Services by 1,273.6% during the second quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 69,324 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $1,050,000 after purchasing an additional 64,277 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its position in shares of AmTrust Financial Services by 54.1% during the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 3,292,917 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $49,854,000 after purchasing an additional 1,156,431 shares during the period. Finally, Gotham Asset Management LLC raised its position in shares of AmTrust Financial Services by 57.4% during the second quarter. Gotham Asset Management LLC now owns 32,471 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $492,000 after purchasing an additional 11,845 shares during the period. 36.80% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

AmTrust Financial Services Company Profile

Amtrust Financial Services, Inc (AmTrust) is an insurance holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides specialty property and casualty insurance focusing on workers’ compensation and commercial package coverage for small business, specialty risk and extended warranty coverage, and property and casualty coverage for middle market business.

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