Jane Street Group LLC boosted its stake in Essent Group Ltd (NYSE:ESNT) by 170.9% during the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The firm owned 30,209 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 19,057 shares during the period. Jane Street Group LLC’s holdings in Essent Group were worth $1,571,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in the business. Bank of America Corp DE grew its stake in Essent Group by 3.9% during the fourth quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 757,189 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $39,366,000 after acquiring an additional 28,736 shares in the last quarter. Ellington Management Group LLC grew its stake in Essent Group by 7.6% in the 4th quarter. Ellington Management Group LLC now owns 98,674 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $5,130,000 after buying an additional 7,000 shares in the last quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. grew its stake in Essent Group by 2.1% in the 4th quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 327,581 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $17,031,000 after buying an additional 6,654 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp grew its stake in Essent Group by 12.5% in the 4th quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,143,619 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $59,457,000 after buying an additional 127,345 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Knights of Columbus Asset Advisors LLC purchased a new position in Essent Group in the 4th quarter worth approximately $3,801,000. 92.28% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of NYSE ESNT opened at $24.59 on Thursday. Essent Group Ltd has a 12 month low of $17.52 and a 12 month high of $55.84. The firm has a market capitalization of $2.13 billion, a PE ratio of 4.35, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.36 and a beta of 1.26. The firm has a fifty day simple moving average of $42.83 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $49.27.

Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, February 14th. The financial services provider reported $1.49 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.46 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $228.80 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $225.94 million. Essent Group had a net margin of 64.05% and a return on equity of 20.08%. Essent Group’s quarterly revenue was up 18.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the business earned $1.31 EPS. Research analysts expect that Essent Group Ltd will post 6 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 20th. Investors of record on Tuesday, March 10th were paid a $0.16 dividend. This represents a $0.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.60%. This is a positive change from Essent Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.15. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, March 9th. Essent Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 11.31%.

A number of research firms have commented on ESNT. Royal Bank of Canada reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Essent Group in a research note on Wednesday, February 19th. MKM Partners upgraded shares of Essent Group from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $50.00 price target for the company in a report on Wednesday, March 11th. Deutsche Bank upped their price target on shares of Essent Group from $65.00 to $67.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 19th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. decreased their price objective on shares of Essent Group from $57.50 to $56.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a report on Tuesday, February 18th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Essent Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, February 20th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has given a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the stock. Essent Group presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $57.00.

In related news, CFO Lawrence E. Mcalee, Jr. sold 700 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, January 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $52.50, for a total transaction of $36,750.00. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 199,041 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $10,449,652.50. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, CFO Lawrence E. Mcalee, Jr. sold 7,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, January 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $51.85, for a total transaction of $388,875.00. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 199,741 shares in the company, valued at $10,356,570.85. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 8,800 shares of company stock valued at $457,125. 2.90% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Essent Group Company Profile

Essent Group Ltd., through its subsidiaries, provides private mortgage insurance and reinsurance for mortgages secured by residential properties located in the United States. The company also provides information technology maintenance and development services; customer support-related services; and contract underwriting services.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT)

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