Primerica Inc. (NYSE:PRI) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Saturday. The brokerage presently has a $77.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s target price points to a potential upside of 11.92% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Primerica, Inc. provides financial products and services. It assists its clients in meeting their needs for term life insurance, which it underwrites, and mutual funds, variable annuities and other financial products, which it distributes primarily on behalf of third parties. The Company’s mission is to serve middle income families by helping them make informed financial decisions and providing them with a strategy and means to gain financial independence. The Company’s sales representatives use its proprietary financial needs analysis, or FNA, tool and an educational approach to demonstrate how its products can assist clients to provide financial protection for their families, save for their retirement and manage their debt. The Company’s clients are generally middle income consumers. Primerica also provides an entrepreneurial business opportunity for individuals to distribute its financial products. The Company is based in Duluth, Georgia. “

Other analysts have also issued research reports about the company. SunTrust Banks Inc. set a $83.00 price target on Primerica and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday. Wells Fargo & Co. assumed coverage on Primerica in a report on Thursday, September 22nd. They set a “market perform” rating on the stock. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $73.33.

Shares of Primerica (NYSE:PRI) opened at 68.80 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $3.16 billion, a PE ratio of 15.87 and a beta of 1.02. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $55.57 and its 200-day moving average is $54.97. Primerica has a one year low of $37.09 and a one year high of $70.10.

Primerica (NYSE:PRI) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 9th. The company reported $1.22 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.13 by $0.09. Primerica had a return on equity of 17.95% and a net margin of 14.22%. The company had revenue of $383.60 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $378.67 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.98 EPS. Primerica’s quarterly revenue was up 7.8% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts expect that Primerica will post $4.41 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 16th. Shareholders of record on Friday, November 18th will be paid a $0.18 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, November 16th. This represents a $0.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.05%. Primerica’s payout ratio is 16.59%.

In other Primerica news, Director Joel M. Babbit sold 1,406 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $57.31, for a total value of $80,577.86. Following the sale, the director now owns 1,915 shares in the company, valued at $109,748.65. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider William A. Kelly sold 1,500 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, October 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $55.25, for a total value of $82,875.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 22,130 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,222,682.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.24% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of PRI. LS Investment Advisors LLC increased its position in Primerica by 5.6% in the third quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 3,014 shares of the company’s stock worth $160,000 after buying an additional 161 shares during the last quarter. Huntington National Bank increased its position in Primerica by 4.2% in the second quarter. Huntington National Bank now owns 2,969 shares of the company’s stock worth $170,000 after buying an additional 119 shares during the last quarter. Creative Planning increased its position in Primerica by 289.8% in the third quarter. Creative Planning now owns 3,294 shares of the company’s stock worth $175,000 after buying an additional 2,449 shares during the last quarter. Calvert Investment Management Inc. purchased a new position in Primerica during the second quarter worth about $200,000. Finally, M&T Bank Corp increased its position in Primerica by 5.7% in the first quarter. M&T Bank Corp now owns 4,613 shares of the company’s stock worth $205,000 after buying an additional 247 shares during the last quarter.

Primerica Company Profile

Primerica Inc (Primerica) distributes financial products to middle-income households. The Company operates through three segments. The Term Life Insurance segment includes underwriting profits on its in-force book of term life insurance policies, net of reinsurance, which are underwritten by its life insurance company subsidiaries.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:PRI

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