Equitable Target of Unusually High Options Trading (NYSE:EQH)

Equitable Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:EQH) saw some unusual options trading activity on Tuesday. Investors purchased 3,356 call options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 893% compared to the typical daily volume of 338 call options.

Equitable stock opened at $33.34 on Thursday. Equitable has a 12 month low of $14.08 and a 12 month high of $33.70. The stock has a fifty day simple moving average of $31.15 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $25.77. The firm has a market cap of $14.52 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of -31.75 and a beta of 1.65.

Equitable (NYSE:EQH) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Monday, February 22nd. The company reported $1.65 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.21 by $0.44. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.37 earnings per share. On average, research analysts expect that Equitable will post 4.53 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, March 11th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, March 4th were given a $0.17 dividend. This represents a $0.68 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.04%. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, March 3rd. Equitable’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 14.02%.

In other news, EVP Dave S. Hattem sold 6,900 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, March 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $31.82, for a total value of $219,558.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CFO Anders Malmstrom sold 200,880 shares of Equitable stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, March 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $32.82, for a total value of $6,592,881.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 289,632 shares of company stock worth $9,466,524 in the last quarter. 0.40% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co NY boosted its stake in shares of Equitable by 18.5% in the 1st quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co NY now owns 5,765 shares of the company’s stock worth $116,000 after buying an additional 898 shares during the last quarter. LPL Financial LLC boosted its position in Equitable by 11.7% in the third quarter. LPL Financial LLC now owns 18,282 shares of the company’s stock worth $333,000 after purchasing an additional 1,916 shares during the last quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. grew its stake in shares of Equitable by 68.4% during the 3rd quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. now owns 1,983,444 shares of the company’s stock valued at $36,179,000 after purchasing an additional 805,656 shares during the period. Morgan Stanley increased its position in shares of Equitable by 7.9% during the 3rd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 493,058 shares of the company’s stock valued at $8,993,000 after purchasing an additional 36,099 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Engineers Gate Manager LP bought a new position in shares of Equitable in the 3rd quarter worth approximately $1,954,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 87.91% of the company’s stock.

Several research analysts recently issued reports on the stock. Truist increased their price target on shares of Equitable from $26.00 to $35.00 in a research note on Thursday, February 18th. Morgan Stanley lifted their target price on shares of Equitable from $34.00 to $44.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Thursday, March 25th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised their price objective on Equitable from $27.00 to $32.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Monday. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Equitable from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 24th. Finally, Citigroup increased their target price on Equitable from $34.00 to $38.00 in a research note on Wednesday, March 31st. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $32.17.

Equitable Company Profile

Equitable Holdings, Inc, together with its consolidated subsidiaries, operates as a diversified financial services company worldwide. The company operates through four segments: Individual Retirement, Group Retirement, Investment Management and Research, and Protection Solutions. The Individual Retirement segment offers a suite of variable annuity products primarily to affluent and high net worth individuals.

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