Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of AMERISAFE, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMSF) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report published on Friday morning.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Amerisafe have underperformed its industry in the last three months. The company’s efficient claims management, good underwriting results, favorable loss and frequency trends, prudent reserve analytics, and improved operating leverage impress. Cost control measures will provide a cushion to operating margins at a time when top-line growth is difficult to achieve. Moreover, Amerisafe has maintained a niche position in the workers' compensation market. Top line is suffering from past more than a year led by loss of three large accounts recently. The company is also witnessing a decline in premium collections, increase in losses paid and underwriting expenses, which has further pressurized cash flow. “

Separately, BidaskClub lowered shares of AMERISAFE from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Wednesday, July 12th.

AMERISAFE (AMSF) opened at 56.60 on Friday. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $55.59 and a 200-day moving average of $57.73. AMERISAFE has a 52-week low of $51.20 and a 52-week high of $69.40. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.08 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.50 and a beta of 0.89.

AMERISAFE (NASDAQ:AMSF) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The insurance provider reported $0.82 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.77 by $0.05. AMERISAFE had a net margin of 17.17% and a return on equity of 14.04%. The firm had revenue of $89.93 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $92.33 million. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.85 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 7.8% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts forecast that AMERISAFE will post $3.18 EPS for the current fiscal year.

COPYRIGHT VIOLATION WARNING: This article was first published by Watch List News and is the sole property of of Watch List News. If you are reading this article on another site, it was stolen and reposted in violation of U.S. and international trademark and copyright legislation. The legal version of this article can be viewed at https://www.watchlistnews.com/amerisafe-inc-amsf-lowered-to-hold-at-zacks-investment-research/1572218.html.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 22nd. Investors of record on Friday, September 8th will be issued a dividend of $0.20 per share. This represents a $0.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.41%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 7th. AMERISAFE’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 23.32%.

In related news, Director Randy Roach sold 500 shares of AMERISAFE stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $56.90, for a total transaction of $28,450.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 8,399 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $477,903.10. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Insiders own 2.20% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in shares of AMERISAFE by 0.9% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,275,948 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $129,615,000 after purchasing an additional 21,196 shares during the last quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC grew its holdings in shares of AMERISAFE by 19.9% during the 2nd quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 1,219,841 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $69,470,000 after purchasing an additional 202,379 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its holdings in shares of AMERISAFE by 6.7% during the 1st quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,009,198 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $65,497,000 after purchasing an additional 63,165 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its holdings in shares of AMERISAFE by 1.0% during the 1st quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 939,594 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $60,979,000 after purchasing an additional 9,600 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK grew its holdings in shares of AMERISAFE by 17.1% during the 1st quarter. Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK now owns 665,198 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $43,172,000 after purchasing an additional 97,108 shares during the last quarter. 99.51% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

AMERISAFE Company Profile

Amerisafe, Inc is an insurance holding company. The Company is engaged in providing workers’ compensation insurance focused on small to mid-sized employers engaged in hazardous industries, principally construction, trucking, logging and lumber, manufacturing, and agriculture. It is engaged in underwriting the workers’ compensation exposures inherent in these industries.

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on AMERISAFE (AMSF)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Receive News & Ratings for AMERISAFE Inc. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for AMERISAFE Inc. and related companies with Analyst Ratings Network's FREE daily email newsletter.