State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D Has $2.34 Million Position in Essent Group Ltd. (NYSE:ESNT)

State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D cut its holdings in shares of Essent Group Ltd. (NYSE:ESNTGet Rating) by 8.2% during the first quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 56,867 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after selling 5,065 shares during the quarter. State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D owned about 0.05% of Essent Group worth $2,343,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other institutional investors have also made changes to their positions in ESNT. Rockefeller Capital Management L.P. increased its holdings in shares of Essent Group by 73.7% during the 4th quarter. Rockefeller Capital Management L.P. now owns 554 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $25,000 after acquiring an additional 235 shares during the last quarter. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC acquired a new position in Essent Group in the 4th quarter valued at $31,000. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. acquired a new position in Essent Group in the 4th quarter valued at $208,000. Sandhill Capital Partners LLC acquired a new position in Essent Group in the 4th quarter valued at $311,000. Finally, Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL acquired a new position in Essent Group in the 4th quarter valued at $346,000. 92.72% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Essent Group Stock Performance

NYSE:ESNT opened at $41.59 on Wednesday. The stock has a fifty day moving average price of $40.02 and a 200-day moving average price of $41.84. The company has a market cap of $4.48 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 5.61, a PEG ratio of 0.56 and a beta of 1.18. Essent Group Ltd. has a fifty-two week low of $35.53 and a fifty-two week high of $50.17.

Essent Group (NYSE:ESNTGet Rating) last released its earnings results on Friday, May 6th. The financial services provider reported $2.52 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.62 by $0.90. The firm had revenue of $264.60 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $240.09 million. Essent Group had a return on equity of 19.64% and a net margin of 78.25%. The company’s revenue was up 8.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $1.21 EPS. Research analysts predict that Essent Group Ltd. will post 7.49 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Essent Group Increases Dividend

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 10th. Investors of record on Wednesday, June 1st were given a dividend of $0.21 per share. This is an increase from Essent Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.20. This represents a $0.84 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.02%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, May 31st. Essent Group’s dividend payout ratio is currently 11.32%.

Insider Buying and Selling

In related news, Director Douglas J. Pauls sold 2,400 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $41.75, for a total transaction of $100,200.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 26,630 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,111,802.50. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. 2.90% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Analysts Set New Price Targets

ESNT has been the topic of a number of research reports. BTIG Research decreased their price objective on Essent Group from $58.00 to $55.00 in a report on Tuesday, April 12th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised Essent Group from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $47.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Monday, April 11th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. According to MarketBeat.com, Essent Group currently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus price target of $54.17.

Essent Group Company Profile

(Get Rating)

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

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

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