Stock Traders Buy High Volume of Call Options on AON (NYSE:AON)


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Aon plc (NYSE:AON) was the target of unusually large options trading on Tuesday. Stock traders bought 3,944 call options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 290% compared to the typical daily volume of 1,011 call options.

Several equities analysts have recently weighed in on AON shares. Atlantic Securities raised shares of AON from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $265.00 target price for the company in a report on Thursday, February 11th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of AON from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $237.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, February 9th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price target on AON from $241.00 to $249.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Monday. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft boosted their price objective on AON from $205.00 to $245.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday. Finally, Morgan Stanley lifted their price target on shares of AON from $236.00 to $254.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 22nd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company. AON has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $232.67.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Schonfeld Strategic Advisors LLC grew its stake in shares of AON by 69.3% in the 3rd quarter. Schonfeld Strategic Advisors LLC now owns 31,530 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $6,505,000 after buying an additional 12,908 shares during the period. Strs Ohio increased its stake in AON by 21.4% during the third quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 121,015 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $24,965,000 after acquiring an additional 21,347 shares during the last quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System raised its position in AON by 20.3% in the fourth quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 14,200 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $3,000,000 after purchasing an additional 2,400 shares during the period. Abner Herrman & Brock LLC increased its position in shares of AON by 3.9% during the 4th quarter. Abner Herrman & Brock LLC now owns 64,632 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $13,655,000 after purchasing an additional 2,430 shares during the last quarter. Finally, CX Institutional purchased a new stake in AON in the 4th quarter valued at about $2,936,000. 95.71% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

AON traded up $1.51 on Tuesday, reaching $253.97. 40,360 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,704,314. The stock has a market cap of $57.44 billion, a PE ratio of 32.72 and a beta of 0.83. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.00, a current ratio of 2.01 and a quick ratio of 2.01. AON has a twelve month low of $176.09 and a twelve month high of $254.84. The stock’s fifty day moving average price is $232.91 and its 200-day moving average price is $216.05.

AON (NYSE:AON) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 29th. The financial services provider reported $4.28 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $4.05 by $0.23. AON had a return on equity of 65.00% and a net margin of 16.56%. The business had revenue of $3.53 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.35 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $3.68 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 9.5% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, research analysts predict that AON will post 9.66 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 14th. Stockholders of record on Monday, May 3rd will be issued a dividend of $0.51 per share. This represents a $2.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.80%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, April 30th. This is a positive change from AON’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.46. AON’s payout ratio is currently 20.07%.

About AON

Aon plc, a professional services firm, provides advice and solutions to clients focused on risk, retirement, and health worldwide. It offers commercial risk solutions, including retail brokerage, cyber, and global risk consulting solutions, as well as acts as a captive insurance solutions provider; and health solutions, such as health and benefits brokerages, and health care exchanges.

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