W. R. Berkley Co. (NYSE:WRB) Shares Bought by Verition Fund Management LLC

Verition Fund Management LLC grew its position in shares of W. R. Berkley Co. (NYSE:WRBGet Rating) by 20.8% during the 1st quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The fund owned 11,021 shares of the insurance provider’s stock after purchasing an additional 1,896 shares during the quarter. Verition Fund Management LLC’s holdings in W. R. Berkley were worth $734,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Several other hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in WRB. Russell Investments Group Ltd. lifted its position in W. R. Berkley by 57.5% in the first quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 95,446 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $6,354,000 after purchasing an additional 34,852 shares during the period. Integrated Advisors Network LLC acquired a new stake in shares of W. R. Berkley during the 1st quarter valued at approximately $284,000. Baker Tilly Wealth Management LLC increased its stake in shares of W. R. Berkley by 73.6% during the 1st quarter. Baker Tilly Wealth Management LLC now owns 17,363 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $1,156,000 after purchasing an additional 7,361 shares in the last quarter. Caisse DE Depot ET Placement DU Quebec purchased a new position in shares of W. R. Berkley during the 4th quarter worth approximately $5,007,000. Finally, Los Angeles Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of W. R. Berkley by 53.1% during the 1st quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management LLC now owns 406,585 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $27,074,000 after purchasing an additional 141,051 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 69.05% of the company’s stock.

W. R. Berkley Price Performance

WRB opened at $64.44 on Friday. The company has a 50-day moving average of $65.01 and a 200-day moving average of $66.49. The company has a market capitalization of $17.09 billion, a P/E ratio of 13.56, a PEG ratio of 1.80 and a beta of 0.62. W. R. Berkley Co. has a 1-year low of $48.20 and a 1-year high of $72.32. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.43, a quick ratio of 0.39 and a current ratio of 0.39.

W. R. Berkley (NYSE:WRBGet Rating) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 21st. The insurance provider reported $1.12 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.84 by $0.28. The company had revenue of $2.68 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.56 billion. W. R. Berkley had a net margin of 12.71% and a return on equity of 17.26%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.78 EPS. Equities analysts expect that W. R. Berkley Co. will post 4.1 EPS for the current fiscal year.

W. R. Berkley Announces Dividend

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 3rd. Stockholders of record on Monday, September 26th will be given a $0.10 dividend. This represents a $0.40 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.62%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, September 23rd. W. R. Berkley’s payout ratio is currently 8.42%.

Insider Transactions at W. R. Berkley

In related news, Director Mark Ellwood Brockbank bought 1,434 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 1st. The stock was bought at an average price of $61.85 per share, with a total value of $88,692.90. Following the transaction, the director now owns 6,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $371,100. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Insiders own 22.50% of the company’s stock.

Analyst Ratings Changes

Several research firms have commented on WRB. Argus began coverage on shares of W. R. Berkley in a research note on Wednesday, August 3rd. They issued a “buy” rating and a $72.00 target price for the company. Jefferies Financial Group lifted their price target on shares of W. R. Berkley from $67.00 to $70.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 12th. StockNews.com lowered shares of W. R. Berkley from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, July 25th. Wells Fargo & Company lifted their target price on shares of W. R. Berkley to $83.00 in a report on Friday, July 22nd. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods upgraded shares of W. R. Berkley from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and lifted their target price for the company from $77.00 to $80.00 in a report on Monday, September 5th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, W. R. Berkley has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus price target of $73.70.

W. R. Berkley Company Profile

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W. R. Berkley Corporation, an insurance holding company, operates as a commercial lines writer in the United States and internationally. It operates in two segments, Insurance and Reinsurance & Monoline Excess. The Insurance segment underwrites commercial insurance business, including premises operations, commercial automobile, property, products liability, and general and professional liability lines.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for W. R. Berkley (NYSE:WRB)

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