Humana Inc (NYSE:HUM) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Humana’s continuous margin growth, accretive acquisitions, efficient capital deployment, business diversification initiatives and consistent revenue growth paved the way for long-term growth. The company’s earnings per share of $2.75 beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate and improved 38% year over year, primarily due to the receipt of the break up fee from the terminated merger with Aetna and outstanding performance by the Retail segment. Its strong balance sheet is another positive. In fact, the stock gained 35% as against the Zacks categorized HMO industry’s increase of 32%, in last one year. However, cancellation of the merger with Aetna, which would have solidified its position in the industry, lowered Humana’s face value in the market. Moreover, stiff competition, and weakness in individual commercial business raise concerns.”

Several other equities analysts also recently issued reports on the stock. Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. began coverage on shares of Humana in a report on Thursday, March 30th. They set an “outperform” rating and a $236.00 price objective on the stock. Cowen and Company restated an “outperform” rating and set a $230.00 price objective on shares of Humana in a report on Tuesday, April 25th. Deutsche Bank AG cut their price objective on shares of Humana from $234.00 to $216.00 and set a “hold” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, May 10th. Evercore ISI restated an “outperform” rating and set a $240.00 price objective on shares of Humana in a report on Tuesday, April 25th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus downgraded shares of Humana from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and cut their price objective for the company from $214.00 to $210.00 in a report on Tuesday, January 24th. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $215.25.

Analyst Recommendations for Humana (NYSE:HUM)

Humana (NYSE:HUM) traded down 0.84% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, reaching $228.36. 505,225 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The company’s 50-day moving average is $220.46 and its 200 day moving average is $208.72. The firm has a market capitalization of $32.96 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.27 and a beta of 0.91. Humana has a one year low of $150.00 and a one year high of $233.66.

Humana (NYSE:HUM) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, May 3rd. The insurance provider reported $2.75 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.55 by $0.20. The business had revenue of $13.76 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $13.61 billion. Humana had a net margin of 1.09% and a return on equity of 13.09%. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.86 earnings per share. Equities analysts predict that Humana will post $11.14 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 31st. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 30th will be given a $0.40 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, June 28th. This represents a $1.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.69%. Humana’s dividend payout ratio is presently 29.59%.

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In other Humana news, COO James E. Murray sold 9,523 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $204.69, for a total value of $1,949,262.87. Following the sale, the chief operating officer now owns 76,798 shares in the company, valued at approximately $15,719,782.62. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CEO Bruce D. Broussard sold 118,231 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $225.82, for a total value of $26,698,924.42. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 171,170 shares in the company, valued at approximately $38,653,609.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 220,374 shares of company stock worth $48,373,390. Insiders own 0.50% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in HUM. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America raised its stake in Humana by 0.7% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 575 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $119,000 after buying an additional 4 shares in the last quarter. AE Wealth Management LLC raised its stake in Humana by 3.8% in the first quarter. AE Wealth Management LLC now owns 1,305 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $269,000 after buying an additional 48 shares in the last quarter. Howard Hughes Medical Institute raised its stake in Humana by 6.2% in the first quarter. Howard Hughes Medical Institute now owns 1,178 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $243,000 after buying an additional 69 shares in the last quarter. Financial Advisors Network Inc. raised its stake in Humana by 6.1% in the first quarter. Financial Advisors Network Inc. now owns 1,367 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $316,000 after buying an additional 79 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Sit Investment Associates Inc. raised its stake in Humana by 0.6% in the third quarter. Sit Investment Associates Inc. now owns 13,510 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $2,390,000 after buying an additional 80 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 93.00% of the company’s stock.

About Humana

Humana Inc is a health and well-being company. The Company’s segments include Retail, Group, Healthcare Services and Other Businesses. The Retail segment consists of Medicare benefits, as well as individual commercial fully insured medical and specialty health insurance benefits, including dental, vision, and other supplemental health and financial protection products.

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