Lincoln National (LNC) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Lincoln National (NYSE:LNC) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note published on Tuesday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Lincoln National's stock has outperformed its industry year to date. The company is poised to grow on the back of its increasing top line led by strong performance of the Life Insurance Segment, new product introduction, enhancement of existing products and change in business mix. It has also streamlined its business by axing unprofitable and non-core lines. Its operational efficiency and disciplined capital management are noteworthy. Also, its increased expense driven by investment in technology will dent margins for the next several quarters. High leverage is another cause of concern.”

LNC has been the subject of a number of other reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $92.00 price target on shares of Lincoln National and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, May 2nd. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Lincoln National from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 27th. Finally, UBS Group lifted their price target on shares of Lincoln National from $67.00 to $69.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a research report on Thursday, May 2nd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $75.85.

Shares of NYSE:LNC opened at $63.49 on Tuesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.34, a current ratio of 0.19 and a quick ratio of 0.19. The stock has a market capitalization of $13.01 billion, a P/E ratio of 7.49, a PEG ratio of 0.78 and a beta of 1.95. Lincoln National has a 52 week low of $48.07 and a 52 week high of $71.27.

Lincoln National (NYSE:LNC) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 1st. The financial services provider reported $2.14 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.08 by $0.06. Lincoln National had a net margin of 9.02% and a return on equity of 12.32%. The firm had revenue of $4.36 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.25 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.97 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 19.7% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Lincoln National will post 9.29 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, August 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, July 10th will be given a dividend of $0.37 per share. This represents a $1.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.33%. Lincoln National’s payout ratio is 17.45%.

In related news, EVP Kenneth S. Solon sold 11,738 shares of Lincoln National stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.39, for a total transaction of $755,809.82. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, EVP Jamie Ohl sold 7,263 shares of Lincoln National stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, March 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.70, for a total value of $448,127.10. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 23,159 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,428,910.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 36,041 shares of company stock valued at $2,339,312. Insiders own 1.50% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Accident Compensation Corp raised its position in shares of Lincoln National by 44.4% during the 1st quarter. Accident Compensation Corp now owns 20,500 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $1,203,000 after purchasing an additional 6,300 shares during the last quarter. Cleararc Capital Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Lincoln National during the 1st quarter worth approximately $200,000. Horizon Investments LLC acquired a new position in shares of Lincoln National during the 1st quarter worth approximately $213,000. BlueMountain Capital Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Lincoln National during the 1st quarter worth approximately $294,000. Finally, Kore Private Wealth LLC acquired a new position in shares of Lincoln National during the 1st quarter worth approximately $59,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 81.04% of the company’s stock.

About Lincoln National

Lincoln National Corporation, through its subsidiaries, operates multiple insurance and retirement businesses in the United States. It operates through four segments: Annuities, Retirement Plan Services, Life Insurance, and Group Protection. The Annuities segment offers variable, fixed, and indexed variable annuities.

Further Reading: What is a Roth IRA?

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on Lincoln National (LNC)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Analyst Recommendations for Lincoln National (NYSE:LNC)

Receive News & Ratings for Lincoln National Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Lincoln National and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.