Anthem, Inc. (ANTM) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research to Hold

Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Anthem’s shares have outperformed the industry in last one year. The company’s diverse product portfolio has helped in improving underwriting results. Anthem’s strategic acquisitions, divestitures and ACO arrangements further pave the way for long-term growth. Its rising level of medical membership continues to boost the top line. The company’s 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 and 2018 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, weak public exchange business remains a major area of concern. Also, rising level of debt continues to weigh on margins.”

Other research analysts have also issued reports about the stock. BidaskClub raised shares of Anthem from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, September 6th. Bank of America Corporation raised their price objective on shares of Anthem from $224.00 to $228.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 14th. Citigroup Inc. reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $205.00 price objective on shares of Anthem in a research note on Wednesday, June 28th. Morgan Stanley initiated coverage on shares of Anthem in a research note on Tuesday, June 6th. They issued an “equal weight” rating and a $196.00 price objective on the stock. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $204.00 price objective on shares of Anthem in a research note on Sunday, August 20th. Ten analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the company. Anthem currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $183.94.

Shares of Anthem (ANTM) traded down 3.61% during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $188.87. 1,504,846 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. The company has a 50 day moving average of $191.62 and a 200 day moving average of $181.23. Anthem has a 52-week low of $114.85 and a 52-week high of $198.98. The firm has a market cap of $49.59 billion, a PE ratio of 17.86 and a beta of 0.70.

Anthem (NYSE:ANTM) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 26th. The company reported $3.37 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $3.23 by $0.14. Anthem had a net margin of 3.24% and a return on equity of 12.93%. The firm had revenue of $22.20 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $22.25 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $3.33 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 4.3% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts predict that Anthem will post $11.83 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In related news, EVP Thomas C. Zielinski sold 9,127 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $191.25, for a total transaction of $1,745,538.75. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 26,571 shares in the company, valued at $5,081,703.75. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, insider Joseph Swedish sold 21,125 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, September 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $197.00, for a total transaction of $4,161,625.00. Following the sale, the insider now owns 87,668 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $17,270,596. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 30,776 shares of company stock valued at $6,007,143 in the last 90 days. 0.36% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. USA Financial Portformulas Corp purchased a new stake in Anthem during the second quarter worth about $3,724,000. Toronto Dominion Bank increased its holdings in Anthem by 23.2% during the second quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 95,759 shares of the company’s stock worth $18,013,000 after buying an additional 18,034 shares during the last quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC increased its holdings in Anthem by 85.0% during the second quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 5,122 shares of the company’s stock worth $964,000 after buying an additional 2,354 shares during the last quarter. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd purchased a new stake in Anthem during the second quarter worth about $744,000. Finally, Gofen & Glossberg LLC IL increased its holdings in Anthem by 0.6% during the second quarter. Gofen & Glossberg LLC IL now owns 2,540 shares of the company’s stock worth $478,000 after buying an additional 15 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 87.69% of the company’s stock.

Anthem Company Profile

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.

Analyst Recommendations for Anthem (NYSE:ANTM)

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