Premier Inc. (NASDAQ:PINC) shares saw unusually-strong trading volume on Friday . Approximately 626,476 shares traded hands during trading, an increase of 63% from the previous session’s volume of 383,282 shares.The stock last traded at $32.75 and had previously closed at $32.41.

A number of equities research analysts recently weighed in on PINC shares. Zacks Investment Research raised Premier from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $38.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Monday, April 11th. Jefferies Group reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Premier in a research report on Monday, April 11th. Canaccord Genuity reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Premier in a research report on Wednesday, June 8th. KeyCorp reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Premier in a research report on Sunday, May 22nd. Finally, Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Premier in a research report on Tuesday, May 10th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $39.86.

The stock has a market capitalization of $1.49 billion and a P/E ratio of 58.60. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $32.88 and its 200-day moving average price is $32.73.

Premier (NASDAQ:PINC) last issued its earnings results on Monday, May 9th. The company reported $0.44 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.41 by $0.03. The firm earned $298.70 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $302.86 million. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.38 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 14.1% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts forecast that Premier Inc. will post $1.63 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, insider Durral R. Gilbert sold 20,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $34.00, for a total value of $680,000.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 44,239 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,504,126. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP R. Wesley Champion sold 25,049 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $33.23, for a total transaction of $832,378.27. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 40,913 shares in the company, valued at $1,359,538.99. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of hedge funds and institutional investors recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position in shares of Premier by 11.3% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 153,413 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,411,000 after buying an additional 15,594 shares during the period. Jennison Associates LLC raised its position in shares of Premier by 17.0% in the fourth quarter. Jennison Associates LLC now owns 893,647 shares of the company’s stock worth $31,519,000 after buying an additional 129,650 shares during the period. California Public Employees Retirement System raised its position in shares of Premier by 24.7% in the fourth quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 124,600 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,395,000 after buying an additional 24,700 shares during the period. Rhumbline Advisers raised its position in shares of Premier by 3.2% in the fourth quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 32,806 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,157,000 after buying an additional 1,020 shares during the period. Finally, First Trust Advisors LP raised its position in shares of Premier by 49.9% in the fourth quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 103,881 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,664,000 after buying an additional 34,589 shares during the period.

Premier, Inc is a healthcare improvement company. The Company is uniting an alliance of approximately 3,600 United States hospitals and approximately 120,000 other providers to transform healthcare. The Company operates healthcare group purchasing organizations and also provides integrated data and analytics, supply chain solutions, advisory services, performance improvement collaborative and other services.

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