Essent Group (ESNT) Rating Increased to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a note issued to investors on Monday. The brokerage currently has a $51.00 price target on the financial services provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target would indicate a potential upside of 13.13% from the stock’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Essent Group Ltd., through its subsidiaries, operates as a private mortgage insurance company. It serves originators of residential mortgage loans, such as regulated depository institutions, mortgage banks, credit unions, and other lenders. Essent Group Ltd. is based in Hamilton, Bermuda. “

ESNT has been the topic of a number of other reports. Deutsche Bank boosted their target price on Essent Group from $48.00 to $49.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 25th. BidaskClub raised Essent Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 18th. Wells Fargo & Co began coverage on Essent Group in a research report on Tuesday, November 28th. They set an “outperform” rating and a $52.00 target price on the stock. Barclays boosted their target price on Essent Group from $45.00 to $46.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Friday, November 10th. Finally, ValuEngine lowered Essent Group from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, December 1st. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $48.20.

Essent Group (ESNT) traded down $0.87 on Monday, hitting $45.08. The stock had a trading volume of 617,973 shares, compared to its average volume of 691,872. Essent Group has a 12 month low of $31.54 and a 12 month high of $47.29. The company has a market cap of $4,440.00, a P/E ratio of 15.13, a PEG ratio of 1.49 and a beta of 1.15.

Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, November 9th. The financial services provider reported $0.82 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.75 by $0.07. The company had revenue of $150.20 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $143.79 million. Essent Group had a return on equity of 18.55% and a net margin of 51.64%. Essent Group’s revenue for the quarter was up 23.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.65 earnings per share. equities research analysts predict that Essent Group will post 3.08 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, CFO Lawrence E. Mcalee, Jr. sold 7,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, October 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $45.01, for a total transaction of $315,070.00. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 265,167 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $11,935,166.67. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Andrew Turnbull sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $46.00, for a total value of $230,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 24,596 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,131,416. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 53,858 shares of company stock worth $2,414,044 over the last three months. 18.10% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA grew its stake in Essent Group by 1,181.9% in the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 37,484 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,392,000 after purchasing an additional 34,560 shares in the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC grew its stake in Essent Group by 26.4% in the second quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 110,244 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $4,094,000 after purchasing an additional 23,018 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Group LLC grew its stake in Essent Group by 5.5% in the second quarter. Renaissance Group LLC now owns 23,276 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $864,000 after purchasing an additional 1,205 shares in the last quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. grew its stake in Essent Group by 18.6% in the second quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 735,340 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $27,311,000 after purchasing an additional 115,177 shares in the last quarter. Finally, 361 Capital LLC purchased a new position in Essent Group in the third quarter valued at about $2,118,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 85.83% of the company’s stock.

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Essent Group Company Profile

Essent Group Ltd. is a private mortgage insurance company. The Company is engaged in offering private mortgage insurance and reinsurance for mortgages secured by residential properties located in the United States. Its products and services include mortgage insurance, contract underwriting, and Bermuda-based insurance and reinsurance.

Analyst Recommendations for Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT)

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