Shares of Sun Life Financial Inc. (NYSE:SLF) (TSE:SLF) have been assigned an average rating of “Hold” from the fourteen research firms that are currently covering the firm, MarketBeat Ratings reports. Ten analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation, two have given a buy recommendation and one has assigned a strong buy recommendation to the company. The average 1-year price target among brokers that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $51.67.

Several equities research analysts have weighed in on SLF shares. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Sun Life Financial from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $45.00 target price for the company in a research note on Tuesday, October 10th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Sun Life Financial from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Saturday, July 8th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Sun Life Financial from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 28th. TD Securities raised their target price on shares of Sun Life Financial from $50.00 to $51.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 10th. Finally, Morgan Stanley raised their target price on shares of Sun Life Financial from $52.00 to $53.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 5th.

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Shares of Sun Life Financial (SLF) traded down 0.66% during trading on Wednesday, reaching $39.37. 348,578 shares of the company were exchanged. The firm has a market capitalization of $24.16 billion, a PE ratio of 11.39 and a beta of 0.88. Sun Life Financial has a 1-year low of $32.22 and a 1-year high of $40.57. The company’s 50-day moving average is $39.10 and its 200 day moving average is $36.58.

Sun Life Financial (NYSE:SLF) (TSE:SLF) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 9th. The financial services provider reported $0.83 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.74 by $0.09. Sun Life Financial had a net margin of 12.48% and a return on equity of 13.29%. The firm had revenue of $8.12 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $7.36 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.90 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 14.8% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Sun Life Financial will post $3.30 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 29th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, August 30th were issued a $0.3439 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Monday, August 28th. This represents a $1.38 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.49%. This is a boost from Sun Life Financial’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.32. Sun Life Financial’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 43.85%.

Sun Life Financial declared that its board has initiated a share buyback program on Wednesday, August 9th that authorizes the company to repurchase 11,500,000 shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the financial services provider to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are usually an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Advisory Services Network LLC raised its holdings in shares of Sun Life Financial by 0.7% in the second quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 5,338 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $191,000 after buying an additional 38 shares during the last quarter. Scotia Capital Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Sun Life Financial by 3.4% in the second quarter. Scotia Capital Inc. now owns 1,677,941 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $59,926,000 after buying an additional 54,456 shares during the last quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Sun Life Financial by 39.5% in the second quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. now owns 11,929 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $427,000 after buying an additional 3,377 shares during the last quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC raised its holdings in shares of Sun Life Financial by 147.6% in the second quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 3,628 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $168,000 after buying an additional 2,163 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Gotham Asset Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Sun Life Financial by 8.4% in the second quarter. Gotham Asset Management LLC now owns 8,820 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $315,000 after buying an additional 683 shares during the last quarter. 40.90% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Sun Life Financial

Sun Life Financial Inc is the holding company of Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada. The Company is a financial services company providing a range of insurance, wealth and asset management solutions to individuals and corporate Clients. It operates through five segments. The Sun Life Financial Canada segment provides retail insurance and investment advice, products and services to people across Canada.

Analyst Recommendations for Sun Life Financial (NYSE:SLF)

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