Stock Traders Buy High Volume of Hartford Financial Services Group Put Options (NYSE:HIG)

Hartford Financial Services Group Inc (NYSE:HIG) was the recipient of unusually large options trading activity on Thursday. Stock investors bought 6,609 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of 961% compared to the average volume of 623 put options.

Several equities analysts have recently commented on the stock. UBS Group upped their price objective on shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from $61.00 to $65.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 10th. Buckingham Research upped their price objective on shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from $60.00 to $63.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, July 19th. B. Riley upped their price objective on shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from $66.00 to $69.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 26th. ValuEngine lowered shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Tuesday. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Hartford Financial Services Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, May 20th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $62.08.

Hartford Financial Services Group stock traded up $0.39 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $60.32. 1,897,300 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 2,058,125. The company has a market cap of $21.84 billion, a P/E ratio of 13.93, a P/E/G ratio of 1.19 and a beta of 0.64. Hartford Financial Services Group has a twelve month low of $40.54 and a twelve month high of $60.77. The company has a quick ratio of 0.28, a current ratio of 0.28 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.27. The company has a fifty day moving average of $58.49 and a 200-day moving average of $54.06.

Hartford Financial Services Group (NYSE:HIG) last released its earnings results on Thursday, August 1st. The insurance provider reported $1.33 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.11 by $0.22. The company had revenue of $5.09 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.07 billion. Hartford Financial Services Group had a net margin of 8.36% and a return on equity of 12.44%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 6.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $1.13 EPS. Equities research analysts expect that Hartford Financial Services Group will post 5.24 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 1st. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, September 3rd will be issued a dividend of $0.30 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, August 30th. This represents a $1.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.99%. Hartford Financial Services Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 27.71%.

In other news, insider William A. Bloom sold 7,927 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, June 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.48, for a total value of $431,862.96. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 23,440 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,277,011.20. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, CFO Beth Ann Costello sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $57.19, for a total transaction of $285,950.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 51,245 shares in the company, valued at $2,930,701.55. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 108,109 shares of company stock worth $6,084,135. Company insiders own 1.70% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in HIG. Virtus ETF Advisers LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Hartford Financial Services Group in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $26,000. NuWave Investment Management LLC increased its position in shares of Hartford Financial Services Group by 950.0% in the 2nd quarter. NuWave Investment Management LLC now owns 504 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $28,000 after purchasing an additional 456 shares during the last quarter. Rational Advisors LLC increased its position in shares of Hartford Financial Services Group by 950.0% in the 2nd quarter. Rational Advisors LLC now owns 504 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $28,000 after purchasing an additional 456 shares during the last quarter. Icon Wealth Partners LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Hartford Financial Services Group in the 1st quarter valued at approximately $33,000. Finally, Prestige Wealth Management Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Hartford Financial Services Group in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $39,000. Institutional investors own 91.60% of the company’s stock.

Hartford Financial Services Group Company Profile

The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides insurance and financial services to individual and business customers in the United States. Its Commercial Lines segment offers workers' compensation, property, automobile, marine, livestock, liability, and umbrella coverages; and customized insurance products and risk management services, including professional liability, bond, surety, and specialty casualty coverages.

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