Manulife Financial Sees Unusually High Options Volume (MFC)

Manulife Financial Co. (NYSE:MFC) (TSE:MFC) was the recipient of unusually large options trading activity on Tuesday. Traders bought 1,564 put options on the company. This represents an increase of 1,784% compared to the average volume of 83 put options.

A number of research firms have recently commented on MFC. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Manulife Financial from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $19.00 price target on the stock in a report on Tuesday, March 26th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Manulife Financial from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, January 2nd. Finally, Barclays restated a “buy” rating on shares of Manulife Financial in a report on Thursday, January 10th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $24.33.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. KMG Fiduciary Partners LLC purchased a new stake in Manulife Financial in the first quarter worth about $211,000. Landsberg Bennett & Dubbaneh LLC purchased a new stake in Manulife Financial in the first quarter worth about $373,000. Truvestments Capital LLC purchased a new stake in Manulife Financial in the first quarter worth about $141,000. Davis Rea LTD. purchased a new stake in Manulife Financial in the first quarter worth about $172,000. Finally, We Are One Seven LLC lifted its stake in Manulife Financial by 93.4% in the first quarter. We Are One Seven LLC now owns 22,714 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $384,000 after acquiring an additional 10,970 shares during the period. 48.40% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

NYSE MFC opened at $18.38 on Wednesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $38.25 billion, a PE ratio of 8.71, a P/E/G ratio of 0.83 and a beta of 1.37. Manulife Financial has a 12 month low of $13.33 and a 12 month high of $19.63.

Manulife Financial (NYSE:MFC) (TSE:MFC) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 13th. The financial services provider reported $0.65 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.50 by $0.15. The firm had revenue of $6.44 billion for the quarter. Manulife Financial had a net margin of 12.34% and a return on equity of 13.51%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.59 earnings per share. On average, research analysts predict that Manulife Financial will post 2.19 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, March 19th. Investors of record on Wednesday, February 27th were paid a $0.1883 dividend. This represents a $0.75 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.10%. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, February 26th. Manulife Financial’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 36.02%.

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About Manulife Financial

Manulife Financial Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides financial advice, insurance, and wealth and asset management solutions for individuals, groups, and institutions in Asia, Canada, and the United States. The company offers individual life, and individual and group long-term care insurance; and guaranteed and partially guaranteed annuity products through insurance agents, brokers, banks, financial planners, and direct marketing.

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