Deutsche Bank AG assumed coverage on shares of Essent Group Ltd. (NYSE:ESNT) in a report released on Friday. The brokerage issued a buy rating and a $38.00 price objective on the stock.
A number of other research analysts have also recently issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research cut Essent Group from a strong-buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Monday, January 9th. Barclays PLC set a $40.00 target price on Essent Group and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Sunday, January 8th. BTIG Research cut Essent Group from a buy rating to a neutral rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 6th. Finally, Bank of America Corporation cut Essent Group from a neutral rating to an underperform rating and set a $29.00 target price for the company. in a research note on Thursday, October 27th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company. Essent Group currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $28.95.
Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) opened at 33.24 on Friday. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $32.52 and a 200-day moving average price of $28.14. The company has a market capitalization of $3.09 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.91 and a beta of 1.18. Essent Group has a 52 week low of $16.49 and a 52 week high of $33.94.
Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) last posted its earnings results on Friday, November 4th. The company reported $0.65 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.58 by $0.07. Essent Group had a return on equity of 16.76% and a net margin of 47.60%. The firm earned $121.25 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $112.13 million. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.44 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up 32.2% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts anticipate that Essent Group will post $2.36 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
In other news, Director Robert Glanville sold 3,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $33.73, for a total transaction of $101,190.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 23,411 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $789,653.03. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, SVP Vijay Bhasin sold 10,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, January 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $32.02, for a total value of $320,200.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 325,362 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,418,091.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 371,954 shares of company stock valued at $12,062,486 over the last ninety days. 20.70% of the stock is owned by insiders.
Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. FMR LLC raised its stake in Essent Group by 1.1% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 7,470,876 shares of the company’s stock valued at $162,940,000 after buying an additional 78,500 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in Essent Group by 12.7% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 5,192,741 shares of the company’s stock valued at $113,253,000 after buying an additional 585,157 shares during the last quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. raised its stake in Essent Group by 9.8% in the second quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 3,959,140 shares of the company’s stock valued at $86,349,000 after buying an additional 353,168 shares during the last quarter. Lord Abbett & CO. LLC raised its stake in Essent Group by 2.4% in the second quarter. Lord Abbett & CO. LLC now owns 2,684,476 shares of the company’s stock valued at $58,548,000 after buying an additional 64,089 shares during the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. raised its stake in Essent Group by 12.4% in the third quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 2,030,071 shares of the company’s stock valued at $54,020,000 after buying an additional 224,042 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 85.60% of the company’s stock.
About Essent Group
Essent Group Ltd. is a private mortgage insurance company. The Company is engaged in serving the United States housing finance industry. It offers private mortgage insurance and reinsurance for mortgages secured by residential properties located in the United States. The primary mortgage insurance operations are conducted through Essent Guaranty, Inc (Essent Guaranty), a subsidiary of the company, which maintains operations centers and operates additional underwriting and service centers in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and Irvine, California.