Argo Group International (NYSE:ARGO) Shares Gap Up After Earnings Beat

Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. (NYSE:ARGO) gapped up before the market opened on Tuesday following a better than expected earnings announcement. The stock had previously closed at $52.90, but opened at $54.73. Argo Group International shares last traded at $54.73, with a volume of 10 shares.

The company reported $0.44 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.02) by $0.46. Argo Group International had a negative return on equity of 4.54% and a negative net margin of 8.49%.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 12th. Investors of record on Friday, February 26th were given a $0.31 dividend. This represents a $1.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.26%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, February 25th. Argo Group International’s dividend payout ratio is presently -137.78%.

A number of equities research analysts recently issued reports on ARGO shares. HSBC lifted their target price on Argo Group International to $10.25 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, March 15th. Compass Point restated a “neutral” rating and issued a $60.00 price target on shares of Argo Group International in a research note on Wednesday, April 28th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Argo Group International from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 28th. Boenning Scattergood restated a “neutral” rating on shares of Argo Group International in a research note on Monday, April 19th. Finally, Raymond James raised their price target on Argo Group International from $55.00 to $60.00 and gave the company a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Monday, March 22nd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, one has issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $42.31.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Meeder Asset Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Argo Group International during the 1st quarter worth approximately $51,000. Arlington Partners LLC bought a new position in shares of Argo Group International during the 1st quarter worth approximately $97,000. KBC Group NV bought a new position in shares of Argo Group International during the 4th quarter worth approximately $104,000. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC boosted its stake in shares of Argo Group International by 22.2% during the 4th quarter. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC now owns 2,750 shares of the company’s stock worth $120,000 after acquiring an additional 500 shares during the period. Finally, Permanens Capital L.P. bought a new stake in Argo Group International in the 4th quarter valued at $167,000. Institutional investors own 89.37% of the company’s stock.

The company has a 50 day moving average of $52.38 and a 200-day moving average of $46.30. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.91 billion, a P/E ratio of -11.82 and a beta of 0.90. The company has a current ratio of 0.57, a quick ratio of 0.57 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.23.

About Argo Group International (NYSE:ARGO)

Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. underwrites specialty insurance and reinsurance products in the property and casualty markets. The company operates in two segments, U.S. Operations and International Operations. It offers primary and excess specialty casualty, contract liability, commercial multi-peril, product liability, environmental liability, and auto liability insurance products; workers compensation, general liability, auto liability, and various public entity liability risks; management liability, and errors and omissions liability; and surety and inland marine insurance products.

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