TD Asset Management Inc. increased its holdings in shares of W. R. Berkley Corp (NYSE:WRB) by 55.1% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 821,832 shares of the insurance provider’s stock after purchasing an additional 291,869 shares during the period. TD Asset Management Inc.’s holdings in W. R. Berkley were worth $54,183,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in WRB. FMR LLC lifted its holdings in W. R. Berkley by 6.8% in the fourth quarter. FMR LLC now owns 4,268 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $315,000 after buying an additional 271 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in W. R. Berkley by 15.7% in the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 1,139,829 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $84,199,000 after buying an additional 154,325 shares during the period. State of Alaska Department of Revenue lifted its holdings in W. R. Berkley by 3.3% in the first quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 19,906 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $1,686,000 after buying an additional 630 shares during the period. Retirement Systems of Alabama lifted its holdings in W. R. Berkley by 0.3% in the first quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 125,477 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $10,630,000 after buying an additional 390 shares during the period. Finally, Sciencast Management LP bought a new position in shares of W. R. Berkley during the first quarter valued at approximately $261,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.63% of the company’s stock.
In related news, Director Mark Ellwood Brockbank sold 77,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, June 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $66.61, for a total transaction of $5,128,970.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 51,329 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,419,024.69. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. 21.70% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
W. R. Berkley (NYSE:WRB) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 23rd. The insurance provider reported $0.82 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.64 by $0.18. The company had revenue of $1.65 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.63 billion. W. R. Berkley had a net margin of 8.81% and a return on equity of 10.55%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 4.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.40 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts forecast that W. R. Berkley Corp will post 2.82 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, October 3rd. Investors of record on Thursday, September 19th will be given a dividend of $0.11 per share. This represents a $0.44 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.62%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 18th. W. R. Berkley’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 16.48%.
WRB has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. Morgan Stanley raised their target price on shares of W. R. Berkley from $63.00 to $73.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Wednesday. UBS Group raised their target price on shares of W. R. Berkley from $53.00 to $56.00 and gave the company a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 24th. Royal Bank of Canada raised their target price on shares of W. R. Berkley to $68.00 and gave the company a “sector perform” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 24th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Deutsche Bank downgraded shares of W. R. Berkley from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $65.71 target price for the company. in a research note on Wednesday, June 26th. Finally, Boenning Scattergood reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of W. R. Berkley in a research note on Wednesday, April 24th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $65.40.
W. R. Berkley Company Profile
W. R. Berkley Corporation, an insurance holding company, operates as a commercial lines writer in the United States and internationally. It operates through two segments, Insurance and Reinsurance. The Insurance segment underwrites commercial insurance business, including premises operations, commercial automobile, property, products liability, and professional liability lines.
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