Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:RNR) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report issued on Friday morning.

According to Zacks, “RenaissanceRe has been witnessing a pressure on pricing due to the difficult reinsurance market over past few quarters that has again kept on affecting top-line growth. The company's weak investment portfolio and a decline in managed catastrophe premiums raise caution. However, its strength lies in its inorganic growth initiatives and capital deployments. Moreover, shift to casualty and specialty insurance from property catastrophe insurance is likely to drive long-term growth. A modest financial position has paved the way for capital deployment activities. Based on this, the company’s board recently increased share repurchase by $500 million. Restructuring, strategic divestitures and strong ratings are also positives. For the third quarter the Zacks Consensus earning estimate stands at $1.94 per share which translates into year over year decline of 24.8%.”

RNR has been the topic of several other reports. Citigroup Inc. restated a neutral rating on shares of RenaissanceRe Holdings in a report on Tuesday, June 21st. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods cut shares of RenaissanceRe Holdings from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a report on Monday, July 11th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and six have assigned a hold rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $119.14.

RenaissanceRe Holdings (NYSE:RNR) traded up 0.40% during trading on Friday, reaching $121.42. The company had a trading volume of 38,402 shares. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $119.42 and a 200 day moving average price of $116.54. The stock has a market cap of $5.00 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.32 and a beta of 0.49. RenaissanceRe Holdings has a 12-month low of $107.27 and a 12-month high of $122.97.

RenaissanceRe Holdings (NYSE:RNR) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The company reported $1.55 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.92 by $0.37. RenaissanceRe Holdings had a net margin of 27.26% and a return on equity of 9.41%. The company had revenue of $483.30 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $410.83 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $2.18 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up 21.6% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts predict that RenaissanceRe Holdings will post $7.44 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 30th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, September 15th were given a dividend of $0.31 per share. This represents a $1.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.03%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, September 13th. RenaissanceRe Holdings’s dividend payout ratio is currently 12.50%.

In related news, CEO Kevin Odonnell sold 3,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $116.97, for a total value of $350,910.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 273,944 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $32,043,229.68. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Rider Fonner Todd sold 1,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $119.47, for a total transaction of $179,205.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 66,753 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,974,980.91. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 2.40% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in RenaissanceRe Holdings by 2.5% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 3,524,571 shares of the company’s stock worth $413,926,000 after buying an additional 87,599 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp boosted its stake in RenaissanceRe Holdings by 23.5% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 2,477,658 shares of the company’s stock worth $296,905,000 after buying an additional 471,491 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors boosted its stake in RenaissanceRe Holdings by 7.6% in the second quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 2,127,662 shares of the company’s stock worth $249,873,000 after buying an additional 150,103 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in RenaissanceRe Holdings by 6.7% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,164,621 shares of the company’s stock worth $136,766,000 after buying an additional 73,621 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Cooke & Bieler LP boosted its stake in RenaissanceRe Holdings by 15.4% in the second quarter. Cooke & Bieler LP now owns 1,120,151 shares of the company’s stock worth $131,551,000 after buying an additional 149,369 shares during the last quarter. 94.78% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About RenaissanceRe Holdings

RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd. provides reinsurance and insurance coverages and related services. The Company’s core products include property catastrophe reinsurance and specialty reinsurance risks. The Company’s segments include Catastrophe Reinsurance, Specialty Reinsurance and Lloyd’s. Catastrophe Reinsurance includes catastrophe reinsurance and certain property catastrophe joint ventures managed by the Company’s ventures unit.

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