Shares of Mercury General Corporation (NYSE:MCY) have been assigned a consensus broker rating score of 3.50 (Sell) from the two brokers that provide coverage for the company, Zacks Investment Research reports. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and one has assigned a hold rating to the company.

Brokers have set a 12 month consensus target price of $52.00 for the company and are expecting that the company will post $0.59 earnings per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Zacks has also given Mercury General Corporation an industry rank of 211 out of 265 based on the ratings given to its competitors.

Several research firms have recently commented on MCY. BidaskClub raised Mercury General Corporation from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Zacks Investment Research raised Mercury General Corporation from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $68.00 price target for the company in a research report on Wednesday, August 2nd.

Mercury General Corporation (MCY) traded up 4.31% during trading on Friday, reaching $57.11. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 159,363 shares. The company has a market capitalization of $3.16 billion, a P/E ratio of 39.94 and a beta of 0.50. Mercury General Corporation has a 12-month low of $50.32 and a 12-month high of $64.52. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $57.55 and its 200 day moving average price is $57.18.

Mercury General Corporation (NYSE:MCY) last issued its earnings results on Monday, July 31st. The insurance provider reported $0.68 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.50 by $0.18. Mercury General Corporation had a return on equity of 6.66% and a net margin of 2.45%. The business had revenue of $852.80 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $815.85 million. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $0.88 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down .6% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts predict that Mercury General Corporation will post $2.03 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 28th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, September 14th will be given a $0.6225 dividend. This represents a $2.49 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.36%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 13th. Mercury General Corporation’s payout ratio is 172.92%.

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In other news, CEO Gabriel Tirador sold 2,355 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $59.00, for a total value of $138,945.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 36,239 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,138,101. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, VP Randall R. Petro sold 1,672 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, June 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $55.52, for a total value of $92,829.44. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 34.30% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in MCY. Tyers Asset Management LLC increased its position in Mercury General Corporation by 6.3% during the 1st quarter. Tyers Asset Management LLC now owns 1,904 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $116,000 after buying an additional 112 shares in the last quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC increased its position in Mercury General Corporation by 6.3% during the 1st quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 2,312 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $141,000 after buying an additional 136 shares in the last quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC increased its position in Mercury General Corporation by 17.5% during the 2nd quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 2,922 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $158,000 after buying an additional 435 shares in the last quarter. Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. acquired a new position in Mercury General Corporation during the 2nd quarter valued at about $166,000. Finally, Pacer Advisors Inc. increased its position in Mercury General Corporation by 2.9% during the 2nd quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 3,308 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $179,000 after buying an additional 92 shares in the last quarter. 47.04% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About Mercury General Corporation

Mercury General Corporation is an insurance holding company. As of December 31, 2016, the Company and its subsidiaries were engaged in writing personal automobile insurance through 14 insurance subsidiaries in 11 states, principally California. Its segments include Property and Casualty Lines, and Other Lines.

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