Wells Fargo & Company started coverage on shares of Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) in a report published on Tuesday, MarketBeat.com reports. The firm issued an outperform rating and a $52.00 target price on the financial services provider’s stock.

ESNT has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods restated a buy rating and set a $44.00 price objective on shares of Essent Group in a research report on Thursday, October 12th. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Essent Group from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Friday, September 8th. Deutsche Bank downgraded shares of Essent Group from a buy rating to a hold rating and set a $49.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Friday, November 3rd. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Essent Group from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $45.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Monday, October 9th. Finally, Compass Point restated a buy rating and set a $50.00 price objective (up previously from $38.00) on shares of Essent Group in a research report on Wednesday, October 11th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $45.78.

Shares of Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) opened at $45.07 on Tuesday. Essent Group has a 12-month low of $30.92 and a 12-month high of $45.55. The company has a market cap of $4,355.71, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.80, a P/E/G ratio of 1.44 and a beta of 1.15.

Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 9th. The financial services provider reported $0.82 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.75 by $0.07. The firm had revenue of $150.20 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $143.79 million. Essent Group had a net margin of 51.64% and a return on equity of 18.55%. Essent Group’s revenue for the quarter was up 23.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.65 EPS. analysts expect that Essent Group will post 3.08 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, Director Robert Glanville sold 3,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, November 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $44.88, for a total transaction of $134,640.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CFO Lawrence E. Mcalee, Jr. sold 7,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, October 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $45.01, for a total transaction of $315,070.00. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 265,167 shares in the company, valued at $11,935,166.67. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 25,045 shares of company stock worth $1,090,475. Corporate insiders own 18.10% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of ESNT. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its stake in shares of Essent Group by 84.0% during the 1st quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 574,453 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $20,778,000 after purchasing an additional 262,251 shares during the period. Campbell & CO Investment Adviser LLC acquired a new stake in Essent Group in the 2nd quarter valued at about $206,000. Strs Ohio grew its stake in Essent Group by 1.3% in the 2nd quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 37,900 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,407,000 after acquiring an additional 500 shares during the last quarter. Bowling Portfolio Management LLC grew its stake in Essent Group by 44.7% in the 2nd quarter. Bowling Portfolio Management LLC now owns 37,492 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,392,000 after acquiring an additional 11,590 shares during the last quarter. Finally, NGAM Advisors L.P. acquired a new stake in Essent Group in the 2nd quarter valued at about $1,663,000. 85.81% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Essent Group

Essent Group Ltd. is a private mortgage insurance company. The Company is engaged in offering private mortgage insurance and reinsurance for mortgages secured by residential properties located in the United States. Its products and services include mortgage insurance, contract underwriting, and Bermuda-based insurance and reinsurance.

Analyst Recommendations for Essent Group (NYSE:ESNT)

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