Zacks Investment Research Upgrades FBL Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:FFG) to “Buy”

FBL Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:FFG) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday, August 8th. The firm currently has a $78.00 price target on the financial services provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective suggests a potential upside of 13.54% from the stock’s current price.

According to Zacks, “FBL FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. is a holding company and hrough its subsidiaries underwrites, markets and distributes life insurance, annuities, property-casualty insurance and mutual funds to individuals and small businesses in 15 midwestern and western states. The Company has exclusive marketing arrangements with the state Farm Bureau Federations in its territory and targets sales to approximately 700,000 Farm Bureau member families and other rural, small town andsuburban residents through an exclusive agency force. The Company offers a full range of life insurance products. “

Separately, BidaskClub raised shares of FBL Financial Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 11th.

FBL Financial Group (FFG) traded down 0.15% during midday trading on Tuesday, hitting $68.70. 30,909 shares of the stock traded hands. FBL Financial Group has a 52 week low of $59.75 and a 52 week high of $82.60. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.71 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.90 and a beta of 0.88. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $67.53 and its 200-day moving average price is $66.08.

FBL Financial Group (NYSE:FFG) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The financial services provider reported $1.23 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.04 by $0.19. FBL Financial Group had a net margin of 15.70% and a return on equity of 9.12%. The company had revenue of $189 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $181.63 million. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.02 EPS. FBL Financial Group’s revenue was up 4.2% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that FBL Financial Group will post $4.45 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other FBL Financial Group news, Director Scott Vanderwal sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.46, for a total transaction of $140,920.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 4,000 shares in the company, valued at approximately $281,840. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 0.60% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA raised its stake in shares of FBL Financial Group by 134.7% in the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 2,068 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $127,000 after buying an additional 1,187 shares in the last quarter. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd bought a new stake in shares of FBL Financial Group during the second quarter worth approximately $200,000. Eqis Capital Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of FBL Financial Group by 7.1% in the first quarter. Eqis Capital Management Inc. now owns 4,203 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $275,000 after buying an additional 277 shares in the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc raised its stake in shares of FBL Financial Group by 34.5% in the second quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 4,417 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $272,000 after buying an additional 1,134 shares in the last quarter. Finally, American International Group Inc. increased its position in FBL Financial Group by 7.2% in the first quarter. American International Group Inc. now owns 6,063 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $397,000 after buying an additional 408 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 29.41% of the company’s stock.

About FBL Financial Group

FBL Financial Group, Inc sells individual life insurance and annuity products under the brand name of Farm Bureau Financial Services. The Company’s segments are Annuity Segment, which sells a variety of traditional annuity products; Life Insurance Segment, which sells a range of traditional and universal life insurance products, and Corporate and Other segment, which provides various support operations, corporate capital and other product lines.

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