Manulife Financial Corp. (NYSE:MFC) has been given an average recommendation of “Buy” by the fifteen research firms that are covering the stock. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the company. The average 12 month target price among brokerages that have covered the stock in the last year is $22.57.

Several research analysts recently commented on the stock. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Manulife Financial Corp. in a research note on Friday. Scotiabank reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and issued a $22.00 price target (up previously from $19.00) on shares of Manulife Financial Corp. in a research note on Tuesday, November 8th. RBC Capital Markets reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $26.00 target price (up from $21.00) on shares of Manulife Financial Corp. in a report on Friday. TD Securities reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $19.00 target price on shares of Manulife Financial Corp. in a report on Wednesday, August 10th. Finally, Macquarie cut shares of Manulife Financial Corp. from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday, August 4th.

Manulife Financial Corp. (NYSE:MFC) opened at 16.56 on Friday. Manulife Financial Corp. has a one year low of $10.99 and a one year high of $16.95. The stock has a market capitalization of $32.67 billion, a PE ratio of 17.60 and a beta of 1.51. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $14.52 and a 200 day moving average of $14.05.

Manulife Financial Corp. (NYSE:MFC) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 10th. The company reported $0.49 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.34 by $0.15. Manulife Financial Corp. had a net margin of 4.63% and a return on equity of 9.14%. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.43 EPS. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Manulife Financial Corp. will post $1.29 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, December 19th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, November 22nd will be issued a $0.138 dividend. This represents a $0.55 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.33%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, November 18th. Manulife Financial Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 50.89%.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Caisse DE Depot ET Placement DU Quebec raised its position in shares of Manulife Financial Corp. by 0.3% in the second quarter. Caisse DE Depot ET Placement DU Quebec now owns 56,940,842 shares of the company’s stock valued at $774,732,000 after buying an additional 174,285 shares during the last quarter. I.G. Investment Management LTD. raised its position in shares of Manulife Financial Corp. by 3.3% in the second quarter. I.G. Investment Management LTD. now owns 52,492,067 shares of the company’s stock valued at $718,005,000 after buying an additional 1,688,169 shares during the last quarter. 1832 Asset Management L.P. raised its position in shares of Manulife Financial Corp. by 2.3% in the second quarter. 1832 Asset Management L.P. now owns 41,066,431 shares of the company’s stock valued at $905,870,000 after buying an additional 928,388 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Manulife Financial Corp. by 12.1% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 37,453,287 shares of the company’s stock valued at $511,986,000 after buying an additional 4,055,711 shares during the last quarter. Finally, CIBC Asset Management Inc raised its position in shares of Manulife Financial Corp. by 4.4% in the third quarter. CIBC Asset Management Inc now owns 31,590,522 shares of the company’s stock valued at $446,489,000 after buying an additional 1,326,595 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 49.14% of the company’s stock.

About Manulife Financial Corp.

Manulife Financial Corporation (MFC) is a life insurance company. The Company is a holding company of The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company (MLI), a Canadian life insurance company, and John Hancock Reassurance Company Ltd. (JHRECO), a Bermuda reinsurance company. The Company’s segments, including Asia Division, Canadian Division, U.S.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:MFC

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