Shares of W. R. Berkley Corp (NYSE:WRB) have been given a consensus recommendation of “Hold” by the eleven ratings firms that are currently covering the company, Marketbeat reports. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, six have assigned a hold recommendation and one has assigned a buy recommendation to the company. The average twelve-month price objective among brokers that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $70.57.

Several analysts recently weighed in on the company. Boenning Scattergood restated a “hold” rating on shares of W. R. Berkley in a report on Wednesday, July 25th. ValuEngine lowered W. R. Berkley from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, June 18th. Goldman Sachs Group began coverage on W. R. Berkley in a research note on Monday, June 18th. They issued a “sell” rating and a $74.00 target price on the stock. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Bank of America lowered W. R. Berkley from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $74.00 target price on the stock. in a research note on Thursday, June 14th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered W. R. Berkley from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Saturday, June 30th.

NYSE:WRB opened at $77.44 on Wednesday. W. R. Berkley has a fifty-two week low of $62.00 and a fifty-two week high of $79.74. The firm has a market cap of $9.25 billion, a P/E ratio of 31.52, a P/E/G ratio of 2.25 and a beta of 0.84. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.49, a quick ratio of 0.37 and a current ratio of 0.37.

W. R. Berkley (NYSE:WRB) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 24th. The insurance provider reported $0.97 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.82 by $0.15. W. R. Berkley had a return on equity of 7.25% and a net margin of 8.54%. The company had revenue of $1.58 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.58 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.85 EPS. W. R. Berkley’s quarterly revenue was up .8% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts forecast that W. R. Berkley will post 3.75 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 3rd. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, September 19th will be paid a $0.15 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, September 18th. This represents a $0.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.77%. W. R. Berkley’s payout ratio is 24.39%.

In other W. R. Berkley news, EVP James G. Shiel sold 22,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, June 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $77.04, for a total value of $1,694,880.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Company insiders own 22.20% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. increased its stake in shares of W. R. Berkley by 75.0% during the second quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 1,701 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $123,000 after buying an additional 729 shares during the period. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System increased its stake in shares of W. R. Berkley by 3.2% during the second quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 26,000 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $1,883,000 after buying an additional 800 shares during the period. America First Investment Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of W. R. Berkley by 0.4% during the second quarter. America First Investment Advisors LLC now owns 194,399 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $14,076,000 after buying an additional 807 shares during the period. Mason Street Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of W. R. Berkley by 1.7% during the first quarter. Mason Street Advisors LLC now owns 48,227 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $3,506,000 after buying an additional 824 shares during the period. Finally, Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB increased its stake in shares of W. R. Berkley by 8.6% during the first quarter. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB now owns 10,393 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $756,000 after buying an additional 825 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 71.76% of the company’s stock.

About W. R. Berkley

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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Analyst Recommendations for W. R. Berkley (NYSE:WRB)

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