Smith Salley & Associates purchased a new position in shares of W.R. Berkley Corp. (NYSE:WRB) during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund purchased 3,710 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $222,000.
A number of other large investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its stake in W.R. Berkley Corp. by 489.1% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 410,000 shares of the company’s stock worth $23,042,000 after buying an additional 340,400 shares in the last quarter. Hancock Holding Co. boosted its stake in W.R. Berkley Corp. by 97.3% in the first quarter. Hancock Holding Co. now owns 105,206 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,914,000 after buying an additional 51,892 shares in the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP boosted its stake in W.R. Berkley Corp. by 0.6% in the first quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 1,394,284 shares of the company’s stock worth $78,359,000 after buying an additional 8,124 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its stake in W.R. Berkley Corp. by 3.2% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 661,981 shares of the company’s stock worth $37,183,000 after buying an additional 20,345 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. boosted its stake in W.R. Berkley Corp. by 0.8% in the first quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 3,428,343 shares of the company’s stock worth $192,673,000 after buying an additional 27,528 shares in the last quarter. 70.99% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Shares of W.R. Berkley Corp. (NYSE:WRB) traded up 0.71% during midday trading on Friday, hitting $58.39. The company had a trading volume of 55,105 shares. The stock has a market capitalization of $7.17 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.32 and a beta of 0.82. W.R. Berkley Corp. has a one year low of $47.54 and a one year high of $60.08. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $57.91 and its 200-day moving average price is $57.24.
W.R. Berkley Corp. (NYSE:WRB) last released its earnings results on Monday, July 25th. The company reported $0.82 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.77 by $0.05. W.R. Berkley Corp. had a return on equity of 9.53% and a net margin of 6.69%. The firm earned $1.56 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.96 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.81 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 4.5% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts predict that W.R. Berkley Corp. will post $3.41 EPS for the current year.
The firm also recently announced a dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, October 5th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, September 20th were paid a dividend of $0.63 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, September 16th. This is a boost from W.R. Berkley Corp.’s previous dividend of $0.12. W.R. Berkley Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 13.65%.
A number of equities research analysts recently weighed in on the company. Royal Bank Of Canada raised their price target on W.R. Berkley Corp. from $57.00 to $61.00 and gave the company a “sector perform” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 13th. Zacks Investment Research raised W.R. Berkley Corp. from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 31st. Compass Point lifted their target price on W.R. Berkley Corp. from $55.00 to $60.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 26th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group AG set a $52.00 target price on W.R. Berkley Corp. and gave the company a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, September 12th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and five have issued a hold rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $56.83.
About W.R. Berkley Corp.
W. R. Berkley Corporation is an insurance holding company. The Company operates in the three segments of the property casualty insurance business: Insurance-Domestic, Insurance-International and Reinsurance-Global. Its Insurance-Domestic segment includes commercial insurance business, including excess and surplus lines and admitted lines, primarily throughout the United States.
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