Lazard Asset Management LLC lessened its stake in Aaron’s, Inc. (NYSE:AAN) by 40.0% in the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 17,769 shares of the company’s stock after selling 11,831 shares during the period. Lazard Asset Management LLC’s holdings in Aaron’s, were worth $691,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC grew its position in Aaron’s, by 5.0% in the 1st quarter. Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC now owns 3,556 shares of the company’s stock valued at $106,000 after buying an additional 168 shares in the last quarter. Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company LLC grew its position in Aaron’s, by 1.9% in the 2nd quarter. Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company LLC now owns 11,178 shares of the company’s stock valued at $245,000 after buying an additional 210 shares in the last quarter. UBS Group AG grew its position in Aaron’s, by 0.6% in the 1st quarter. UBS Group AG now owns 44,095 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,311,000 after buying an additional 255 shares in the last quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System grew its position in Aaron’s, by 1.9% in the 2nd quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 16,400 shares of the company’s stock valued at $638,000 after buying an additional 300 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Advantus Capital Management Inc grew its position in Aaron’s, by 3.9% in the 1st quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc now owns 8,148 shares of the company’s stock valued at $242,000 after buying an additional 307 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 99.83% of the company’s stock.

Several research firms have recently weighed in on AAN. SunTrust Banks, Inc. restated a “buy” rating on shares of Aaron’s, in a research report on Monday, July 31st. Stifel Nicolaus restated a “buy” rating and set a $55.00 price objective (up previously from $40.00) on shares of Aaron’s, in a research report on Sunday, July 30th. KeyCorp upgraded shares of Aaron’s, to an “overweight” rating in a research report on Thursday. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “buy” rating and set a $54.00 price objective on shares of Aaron’s, in a research report on Thursday, September 7th. Finally, Northcoast Research restated a “buy” rating and set a $52.50 price objective (up previously from $45.00) on shares of Aaron’s, in a research report on Monday, July 31st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, seven have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $44.21.

In other Aaron’s, news, insider Robert P. Sinclair, Jr. sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $45.00, for a total transaction of $45,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 11,469 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $516,105. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, insider Robert P. Sinclair, Jr. sold 4,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.47, for a total value of $173,880.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 12,469 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $542,027.43. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 61,776 shares of company stock valued at $2,742,507. Insiders own 1.93% of the company’s stock.

Aaron’s, Inc. (NYSE AAN) opened at 41.37 on Thursday. The company has a market cap of $2.93 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.26 and a beta of 0.18. Aaron’s, Inc. has a 52-week low of $22.37 and a 52-week high of $48.22. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $43.85 and its 200 day moving average is $37.21.

Aaron’s, (NYSE:AAN) last released its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $0.68 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.58 by $0.10. Aaron’s, had a return on equity of 12.00% and a net margin of 4.36%. The firm had revenue of $815.60 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $786.12 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.59 EPS. The business’s revenue was up 3.3% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts forecast that Aaron’s, Inc. will post $2.56 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 2nd. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be given a dividend of $0.027 per share. This represents a $0.11 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.27%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 14th. Aaron’s, ‘s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 5.64%.

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About Aaron’s,

Aaron’s, Inc (Aaron’s) is an omnichannel provider of lease-purchase solutions. The Company engages in the sales and lease ownership and specialty retailing of furniture, consumer electronics, home appliances and accessories through its Company-operated and franchised stores in Canada, as well as its e-commerce platform, Aarons.com.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Aaron`s,  (NYSE:AAN)

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