MetLife (NYSE:MET) Short Interest Update

MetLife (NYSE:MET) was the target of a significant growth in short interest in February. As of February 28th, there was short interest totalling 12,608,208 shares, a growth of 25.1% from the February 15th total of 10,079,728 shares. Approximately 1.3% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 6,147,465 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 2.1 days.

Shares of MET stock traded down $0.76 on Friday, hitting $45.27. 8,637,080 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 5,954,277. The company has a market capitalization of $47,716.68, a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.06, a PEG ratio of 0.75 and a beta of 1.24. MetLife has a 52 week low of $43.38 and a 52 week high of $55.91. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.29, a current ratio of 0.15 and a quick ratio of 0.15.

MetLife (NYSE:MET) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, February 13th. The financial services provider reported $0.64 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.05 by ($0.41). The firm had revenue of $15.79 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $15.89 billion. MetLife had a net margin of 5.69% and a return on equity of 8.59%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.28 earnings per share. equities research analysts expect that MetLife will post 4.91 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in MET. First Fiduciary Investment Counsel Inc. increased its holdings in MetLife by 3.1% in the 4th quarter. First Fiduciary Investment Counsel Inc. now owns 316,150 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $15,985,000 after acquiring an additional 9,465 shares during the last quarter. Snow Capital Management LP increased its holdings in MetLife by 4.7% in the 4th quarter. Snow Capital Management LP now owns 1,204,905 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $60,920,000 after acquiring an additional 53,883 shares during the last quarter. QUANTRES ASSET MANAGEMENT Ltd bought a new stake in MetLife in the 4th quarter valued at $1,279,000. CHURCHILL MANAGEMENT Corp increased its holdings in MetLife by 35.8% in the 4th quarter. CHURCHILL MANAGEMENT Corp now owns 28,309 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,431,000 after acquiring an additional 7,470 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Norinchukin Bank The increased its holdings in MetLife by 12.9% in the 3rd quarter. Norinchukin Bank The now owns 48,172 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $2,503,000 after acquiring an additional 5,505 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 77.69% of the company’s stock.

MET has been the subject of several analyst reports. Wells Fargo reduced their price target on shares of MetLife from $61.00 to $60.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Tuesday, January 30th. Deutsche Bank initiated coverage on shares of MetLife in a research report on Tuesday, January 2nd. They set a “hold” rating and a $55.00 price target for the company. Goldman Sachs reissued a “buy” rating on shares of MetLife in a research report on Wednesday, January 31st. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of MetLife from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, December 18th. Finally, ValuEngine cut shares of MetLife from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, February 2nd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have assigned a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $56.75.

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About MetLife

MetLife, Inc, through its subsidiaries, engages in the insurance, annuities, employee benefits, and asset management businesses. It operates through five segments: U.S.; Asia; Latin America; Europe, the Middle East and Africa; and MetLife Holdings. The company offers life, dental, group short- and long-term disability, individual disability, accidental death and dismemberment, vision, and accident and health coverages, as well as prepaid legal plans; administrative services-only arrangements to employers; and stable value products, including general and separate account guaranteed interest contracts, and private floating rate funding agreements.

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