MetLife, Inc. (NYSE:MET) Sees Significant Growth in Short Interest

MetLife, Inc. (NYSE:MET – Get Rating) saw a large growth in short interest during the month of August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totaling 8,940,000 shares, a growth of 6.9% from the August 15th total of 8,360,000 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 4,220,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 2.1 days. Approximately 1.3% of the company’s shares are sold short.

MetLife Price Performance

MET opened at $66.28 on Tuesday. The firm has a market cap of $53.90 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.49, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.49 and a beta of 1.05. MetLife has a fifty-two week low of $57.05 and a fifty-two week high of $73.18. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $64.34 and its 200 day moving average price is $65.59. The company has a quick ratio of 0.13, a current ratio of 0.13 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.39.

MetLife Dividend Announcement

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, September 14th. Investors of record on Tuesday, August 9th were paid a dividend of $0.50 per share. The ex-dividend date was Monday, August 8th. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.02%. MetLife’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 49.75%.

Insider Buying and Selling at MetLife

In other MetLife news, EVP Steven J. Goulart sold 4,060 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $67.60, for a total value of $274,456.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 55,299 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,738,212.40. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. 0.26% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Institutional Investors Weigh In On MetLife

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Equitable Holdings Inc. increased its stake in shares of MetLife by 5.4% in the fourth quarter. Equitable Holdings Inc. Now owns 6,560 shares of the financial services provider’s shares valued at $410,000 after purchasing an additional 336 during the period. Eagle Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of MetLife by 1.0% in the fourth quarter. Eagle Asset Management Inc. Now owns 35,727 shares of the financial services provider’s stock shares valued at $2,235,000 after purchasing an additional 352 during the period. Level Four Advisory Services LLC increased its stake in shares of MetLife by 17.6% in the fourth quarter. Level Four Advisory Services LLC now owns 7,235 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $452,000 after purchasing an additional 1,085 shares during the period. Invesco Ltd. increased its stake in shares of MetLife by 3.6% in the fourth quarter. Invesco Ltd. Now owns 5,944,602 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $371,478,000 after purchasing an additional 208,333 shares during the period. Finally, Schroder Investment Management Group increased its stake in shares of MetLife by 6.4% in the fourth quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 327,316 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $20,454,000 after purchasing an additional 19,708 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 86.53% of the company’s stock.

Wall Street Analyst Weigh In

A number of analysts recently weighed in on the stock. Credit Suisse Group upped their price target on shares of MetLife from $68.00 to $77.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, August 22nd. Evercore ISI upped their price target on shares of MetLife to $81.00 in a research report on Tuesday, August 9th. Morgan Stanley upped their price target on shares of MetLife from $79.00 to $83.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 17th. Wolfe Research raised shares of MetLife from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $70.00 to $74.00 in a research report on Wednesday, June 22nd. Finally, TheStreet raised shares of MetLife from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research report on Thursday, September 15th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the stock. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the stock has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $76.92.

MetLife Company Profile

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MetLife, Inc, a financial services company, provides insurance, annuities, employee benefits, and asset management services worldwide. It operates through five segments: US; Asia; Latin America; Europe, the Middle East and Africa; and MetLife Holdings. The company offers life, dental, group short-and long-term disability, individual disability, pet insurance, accidental death and dismemberment, vision, and accident and health coverages, as well as prepaid legal plans; administrative services-only arrangements to employers; and general and separate account, and synthetic guaranteed interest contracts, as well as private floating rate funding agreements.

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