Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Friday.
According to Zacks, “Anthem’s shares have outperformed the industry in the last year. The company’s diverse product portfolio has helped in improving underwriting results. Its strategic acquisitions, divestitures and ACO arrangements pave the way for long-term growth. Its rising level of medical membership continues to boost the top line. Its strong capital position backs effective capital deployment. Its frequent share buyback programs and regular dividend payments primarily aim at enhancing shareholders’ value. The company has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2017 earnings being revised upward over the last 60 days. Followed by strong results in first half of 2017, the company has raised the earnings and revenue guidance for 2017. However, loss incurred on public exchange business continues to bother. Also rising level of debt keeps draining the margins. It will release third quarter results on Oct 25, 2017 before the market opens.”
A number of other research firms also recently issued reports on ANTM. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $204.00 price objective on shares of Anthem in a report on Sunday, August 20th. Morgan Stanley boosted their target price on shares of Anthem from $196.00 to $201.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a report on Thursday, August 17th. Cantor Fitzgerald restated a “buy” rating and set a $215.00 target price on shares of Anthem in a report on Thursday, September 14th. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Anthem from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, July 31st. Finally, Credit Suisse Group started coverage on shares of Anthem in a report on Wednesday, July 12th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $195.00 target price on the stock. Ten research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $187.50.
Anthem (NYSE:ANTM) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 26th. The company reported $3.37 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $3.23 by $0.14. Anthem had a net margin of 3.24% and a return on equity of 12.93%. The company had revenue of $22.20 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $22.25 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $3.33 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 4.3% compared to the same quarter last year.
In other Anthem news, insider Joseph Swedish sold 21,125 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, September 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $197.00, for a total transaction of $4,161,625.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 87,668 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $17,270,596. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, Director Julie A. Hill sold 524 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $190.80, for a total transaction of $99,979.20. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 36,924 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $7,045,099.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 51,901 shares of company stock valued at $10,034,202 in the last ninety days. 0.36% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in ANTM. BlackRock Inc. grew its position in shares of Anthem by 2,873.5% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 22,676,945 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,750,316,000 after buying an additional 21,914,321 shares during the period. Wellington Management Group LLP grew its position in shares of Anthem by 53.5% during the 1st quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 4,443,160 shares of the company’s stock worth $734,810,000 after buying an additional 1,548,077 shares during the period. OZ Management LP acquired a new stake in shares of Anthem during the 1st quarter worth approximately $192,493,000. Janus Henderson Group PLC grew its position in shares of Anthem by 2,835.4% during the 2nd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 1,161,736 shares of the company’s stock worth $218,554,000 after buying an additional 1,122,159 shares during the period. Finally, FMR LLC grew its position in shares of Anthem by 8.2% during the 1st quarter. FMR LLC now owns 12,335,115 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,039,982,000 after buying an additional 934,509 shares during the period. 87.65% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
Anthem, Inc is a health benefits company. The Company operates through three segments: Commercial and Specialty Business, Government Business and Other. It offers a spectrum of network-based managed care plans to large and small employer, individual, Medicaid and Medicare markets. Its managed care plans include preferred provider organizations; health maintenance organizations; point-of-service plans; indemnity plans and other hybrid plans, including consumer-driven health plans; and hospital only and limited benefit products.
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