Raymond James Financial, Inc. Upgrades Aetna Inc. (AET) to Outperform
Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET) was upgraded by equities research analysts at Raymond James Financial, Inc. from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report issued on Friday.
A number of other equities analysts also recently commented on AET. Jefferies Group LLC lifted their target price on Aetna from $165.00 to $185.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday. Citigroup Inc. boosted their price objective on Aetna from $183.00 to $197.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Aetna from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday. Credit Suisse Group assumed coverage on Aetna in a research report on Thursday. They set a “neutral” rating and a $174.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Cantor Fitzgerald reiterated an “overweight” rating and set a $175.00 price objective (up from $150.00) on shares of Aetna in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. Eleven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fourteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Aetna currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $166.09.
Aetna (NYSE:AET) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, October 31st. The company reported $2.45 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.06 by $0.39. Aetna had a return on equity of 21.84% and a net margin of 2.93%. The company had revenue of $14.99 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $15.12 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $2.07 earnings per share. Aetna’s quarterly revenue was down 5.0% compared to the same quarter last year.
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In other Aetna news, President Karen S. Lynch sold 15,271 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, September 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $161.91, for a total value of $2,472,527.61. Following the transaction, the president now owns 64,261 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,404,498.51. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, EVP Margaret M. Mccarthy sold 10,288 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $162.85, for a total value of $1,675,400.80. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 33,563 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,465,734.55. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.90% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Aetna by 3,374.9% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 30,712,219 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,917,344,000 after buying an additional 29,828,390 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Aetna by 3.8% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 23,117,526 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,948,640,000 after buying an additional 838,578 shares in the last quarter. Capital World Investors increased its holdings in shares of Aetna by 8.9% in the second quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 20,769,004 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,153,358,000 after buying an additional 1,688,767 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC increased its holdings in shares of Aetna by 73.8% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 13,736,800 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,085,659,000 after buying an additional 5,833,567 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Janus Henderson Group PLC increased its holdings in shares of Aetna by 9,446.2% in the second quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 4,328,900 shares of the company’s stock valued at $657,255,000 after buying an additional 4,283,553 shares in the last quarter. 89.45% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
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.
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