Media stories about Aetna (NYSE:AET) have been trending somewhat positive this week, according to Accern Sentiment Analysis. The research group identifies negative and positive press coverage by analyzing more than 20 million blog and news sources in real time. Accern ranks coverage of publicly-traded companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. Aetna earned a news sentiment score of 0.18 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned news coverage about the company an impact score of 46.190735971776 out of 100, meaning that recent press coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the stock’s share price in the near term.
Here are some of the media stories that may have effected Accern Sentiment’s rankings:
- Health Insurance 2017 Global Key Players –Aetna Inc, Kaiser Permanente Kunlun ,, PICC, UnitedHealth Group … – Medgadget (blog) (medgadget.com)
- Aetna (AET) Shares Raised to Strong Buy from a Buy – Investorplace.com (investorplace.com)
- Analyzing Aetna (AET) & Its Rivals (americanbankingnews.com)
- UPMC Health Plan makes its first big splash in Central Pennsylvania (lancasteronline.com)
Shares of Aetna (AET) traded down 1.18% during trading on Thursday, reaching $161.29. 1,529,236 shares of the company traded hands. The stock has a market capitalization of $53.56 billion, a P/E ratio of 35.80 and a beta of 0.53. Aetna has a 12-month low of $104.59 and a 12-month high of $164.52. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $158.09 and its 200-day moving average is $147.65.
Aetna (NYSE:AET) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The company reported $3.42 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $2.34 by $1.08. The firm had revenue of $15.52 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $15.34 billion. Aetna had a net margin of 2.52% and a return on equity of 20.52%. The business’s revenue was down 2.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $2.21 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Aetna will post $9.55 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 27th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, October 12th will be paid a $0.50 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, October 11th. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.24%. Aetna’s dividend payout ratio is presently 43.67%.
A number of brokerages have commented on AET. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Aetna from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday. Argus reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $185.00 price target (up previously from $165.00) on shares of Aetna in a research report on Tuesday, September 12th. BidaskClub cut shares of Aetna from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 19th. Deutsche Bank AG upped their price target on shares of Aetna from $144.00 to $157.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 13th. Finally, Morgan Stanley upped their price target on shares of Aetna from $172.00 to $179.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 17th. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fifteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Aetna presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $160.77.
In other news, President Karen S. Lynch sold 15,271 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, September 18th. The shares were 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 in the company, valued at $10,404,498.51. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, EVP Margaret M. Mccarthy sold 10,288 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, September 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $162.85, for a total transaction of $1,675,400.80. Following the completion of the transaction, 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. Corporate insiders own 0.90% of the company’s stock.
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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