A number of other analysts also recently issued reports on the stock. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Anthem from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Tuesday, September 5th. Morgan Stanley raised their price target on shares of Anthem from $201.00 to $215.00 and gave the company an equal weight rating in a report on Thursday, October 26th. Bank of America raised their price target on shares of Anthem from $249.00 to $254.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Friday, November 17th. Jefferies Group raised their price target on shares of Anthem from $204.00 to $211.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a report on Friday, October 13th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group initiated coverage on shares of Anthem in a report on Thursday, November 2nd. They set an outperform rating and a $234.00 price target on the stock. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $206.60.
Shares of Anthem (NYSE:ANTM) traded up $1.06 during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $230.21. 1,062,900 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,218,833. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.53, a quick ratio of 1.51 and a current ratio of 1.51. The stock has a market cap of $59,940.00, a P/E ratio of 20.81, a PEG ratio of 1.66 and a beta of 0.79. Anthem has a 12-month low of $142.04 and a 12-month high of $236.39.
Anthem declared that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock buyback program on Thursday, December 7th that allows the company to repurchase $5.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are often a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, December 21st. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, December 5th were paid a $0.70 dividend. This represents a $2.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.22%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, December 4th. Anthem’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 25.32%.
In other Anthem news, Chairman Joseph Swedish sold 21,125 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $231.43, for a total transaction of $4,888,958.75. Following the sale, the chairman now owns 87,668 shares in the company, valued at approximately $20,289,005.24. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Ronald W. Penczek sold 978 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $217.42, for a total transaction of $212,636.76. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 1,222 shares in the company, valued at approximately $265,687.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 44,830 shares of company stock worth $9,880,228 in the last quarter. Company insiders own 0.36% of the company’s stock.
A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. C M Bidwell & Associates Ltd. raised its stake in Anthem by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. C M Bidwell & Associates Ltd. now owns 1,070 shares of the company’s stock worth $201,000 after acquiring an additional 5 shares during the period. Salem Investment Counselors Inc. raised its position in shares of Anthem by 1.4% during the second quarter. Salem Investment Counselors Inc. now owns 710 shares of the company’s stock valued at $134,000 after buying an additional 10 shares during the last quarter. Gofen & Glossberg LLC IL raised its position in shares of Anthem by 0.6% during the second quarter. Gofen & Glossberg LLC IL now owns 2,540 shares of the company’s stock valued at $478,000 after buying an additional 15 shares during the last quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS raised its position in shares of Anthem by 0.4% during the second quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 19,687 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,704,000 after buying an additional 76 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bahl & Gaynor Inc. raised its position in shares of Anthem by 11.1% during the second quarter. Bahl & Gaynor Inc. now owns 1,451 shares of the company’s stock valued at $209,000 after buying an additional 145 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 87.41% of the company’s stock.
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.
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