AmTrust Financial Services (NASDAQ:AFSI) Short Interest Down 11.4% in March

AmTrust Financial Services (NASDAQ:AFSI) was the recipient of a significant drop in short interest during the month of March. As of March 15th, there was short interest totalling 11,486,750 shares, a drop of 11.4% from the February 28th total of 12,967,339 shares. Currently, 10.5% of the company’s shares are sold short. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 3,263,567 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 3.5 days.

Shares of AFSI stock traded up $0.05 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $12.64. 400,157 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,563,792. AmTrust Financial Services has a 12 month low of $8.80 and a 12 month high of $16.48. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.53, a current ratio of 0.55 and a quick ratio of 0.55. The company has a market cap of $2,466.95, a price-to-earnings ratio of 4.79 and a beta of 1.28.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, April 16th. Investors of record on Monday, April 2nd were issued a $0.17 dividend. This represents a $0.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 5.38%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, March 29th. AmTrust Financial Services’s dividend payout ratio is currently 25.76%.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of AFSI. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its holdings in AmTrust Financial Services by 32.4% in the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 2,698,536 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $36,324,000 after buying an additional 660,088 shares during the period. Guggenheim Capital LLC lifted its stake in AmTrust Financial Services by 277.8% in the 4th quarter. Guggenheim Capital LLC now owns 701,151 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $7,061,000 after purchasing an additional 515,547 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its stake in AmTrust Financial Services by 50.4% in the 4th quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,110,664 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $11,185,000 after purchasing an additional 372,065 shares in the last quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group raised its position in shares of AmTrust Financial Services by 845.2% during the 3rd quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 382,798 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $5,244,000 after buying an additional 342,298 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Two Sigma Investments LP raised its position in shares of AmTrust Financial Services by 46.3% during the 4th quarter. Two Sigma Investments LP now owns 626,173 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $6,306,000 after buying an additional 198,024 shares in the last quarter. 29.27% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

AFSI has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. ValuEngine raised AmTrust Financial Services from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 1st. Zacks Investment Research raised AmTrust Financial Services from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $14.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, February 13th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of AmTrust Financial Services from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, February 13th. Finally, SunTrust Banks lowered shares of AmTrust Financial Services from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, March 1st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and eight have assigned a hold rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $14.29.

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AmTrust Financial Services Company Profile

AmTrust Financial Services, Inc provides property and casualty insurance in the United States and internationally. The company operates in three segments: Small Commercial Business, Specialty Risk and Extended Warranty, and Specialty Program. The Small Commercial Business segment offers workers' compensation insurance products; and commercial package, and other property and casualty insurance products, such as commercial property, general liability, inland marine, employment practices liability, commercial automobile, and umbrella coverage to small businesses.

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