Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET) – Investment analysts at Leerink Swann increased their FY2017 earnings per share estimates for Aetna in a research note issued on Wednesday. Leerink Swann analyst A. Gupte now anticipates that the company will post earnings per share of $9.75 for the year, up from their previous estimate of $9.50. Leerink Swann also issued estimates for Aetna’s Q4 2017 earnings at $1.15 EPS.

Aetna (NYSE:AET) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, October 31st. The company reported $2.45 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $2.06 by $0.39. The company had revenue of $14.99 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $15.12 billion. Aetna had a net margin of 2.93% and a return on equity of 21.84%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 5.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $2.07 EPS.

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A number of other equities analysts have also commented on the stock. Argus restated a “buy” rating and issued a $185.00 price objective (up from $165.00) on shares of Aetna in a research report on Tuesday, September 12th. BMO Capital Markets raised their target price on shares of Aetna from $175.00 to $200.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research note on Friday, October 27th. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Aetna from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 19th. Morgan Stanley raised their target price on shares of Aetna from $172.00 to $179.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 17th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC raised their target price on shares of Aetna from $163.00 to $165.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, October 13th. Ten investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Aetna has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $165.62.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, October 27th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, October 12th were issued a dividend of $0.50 per share. This represents a $2.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.18%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, October 11th. Aetna’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 37.04%.

In other news, President Karen S. Lynch sold 15,271 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, September 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $161.91, for a total transaction of $2,472,527.61. Following the sale, the president now owns 64,261 shares in the company, valued at approximately $10,404,498.51. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, EVP Margaret M. Mccarthy sold 10,288 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $162.85, for a total transaction of $1,675,400.80. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 33,563 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,465,734.55. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.90% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. State of Tennessee Treasury Department boosted its holdings in shares of Aetna by 26.3% during the 2nd quarter. State of Tennessee Treasury Department now owns 557,814 shares of the company’s stock valued at $84,692,000 after buying an additional 116,280 shares in the last quarter. Banque Pictet & Cie SA purchased a new position in shares of Aetna in the 2nd quarter worth about $10,567,000. Pictet & Cie Europe SA purchased a new position in shares of Aetna in the 2nd quarter worth about $2,269,000. NBT Bank N A NY purchased a new position in shares of Aetna in the 2nd quarter worth about $215,000. Finally, Eaton Vance Management raised its position in shares of Aetna by 18.3% in the 2nd quarter. Eaton Vance Management now owns 1,050,685 shares of the company’s stock worth $159,526,000 after purchasing an additional 162,502 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 89.45% of the company’s stock.

About Aetna

Aetna Inc is a diversified healthcare benefits company. The Company operates through three segments: Health Care, Group Insurance and Large Case Pensions. It offers a range of traditional, voluntary and consumer-directed health insurance products and related services, including medical, pharmacy, dental, behavioral health, group life and disability plans, medical management capabilities, Medicaid healthcare management services, Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement plans, workers’ compensation administrative services and health information technology (HIT) products and services.

Earnings History and Estimates for Aetna (NYSE:AET)

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