Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET) – Equities researchers at Leerink Swann reduced their FY2018 earnings per share (EPS) estimates for Aetna in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. Leerink Swann analyst A. Gupte now forecasts that the company will post earnings of $9.90 per share for the year, down from their previous estimate of $10.10.

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

AET has been the topic of a number of other reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Aetna from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $174.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Thursday, October 12th. Jefferies Group increased their price objective on shares of Aetna from $165.00 to $185.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. BMO Capital Markets initiated coverage on shares of Aetna in a research note on Monday, October 16th. They set a “market perform” rating and a $175.00 price objective on the stock. Raymond James Financial upgraded shares of Aetna from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $200.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Friday, November 3rd. Finally, Morgan Stanley increased their price objective 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. Twelve investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $175.19.

Aetna (AET) traded down $0.01 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $178.69. 6,229,100 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 2,566,120. Aetna has a 12-month low of $116.04 and a 12-month high of $192.37. The company has a quick ratio of 0.53, a current ratio of 0.53 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52. The company has a market cap of $58,390.00, a P/E ratio of 17.50, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.63 and a beta of 0.61.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Lloyds Banking Group plc acquired a new stake in shares of Aetna in the 3rd quarter worth about $106,000. Bruderman Asset Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Aetna in the 2nd quarter worth about $106,000. Moisand Fitzgerald Tamayo LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Aetna in the 3rd quarter worth about $116,000. Westside Investment Management Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Aetna by 53.5% in the 2nd quarter. Westside Investment Management Inc. now owns 1,148 shares of the company’s stock worth $177,000 after acquiring an additional 400 shares during the period. Finally, Phocas Financial Corp. acquired a new stake in shares of Aetna in the 2nd quarter worth about $182,000. Institutional investors own 88.03% of the company’s stock.

In other news, EVP Margaret M. Mccarthy sold 10,288 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated 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 transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 33,563 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,465,734.55. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, President Karen S. Lynch sold 15,271 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $161.91, for a total transaction of $2,472,527.61. Following the completion of the transaction, the president now owns 64,261 shares in the company, valued at $10,404,498.51. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 1.14% of the company’s stock.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, January 26th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, January 11th will be given a $0.50 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, January 10th. This represents a $2.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.12%. Aetna’s payout ratio is currently 36.97%.

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Aetna Company Profile

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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