Maximus Inc. (NYSE:MMS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “MAXIMUS, Inc. is an extremely dynamic and complex organization that offers government and industry a range of unique services, products, and solutions. The diverse services and products that MAXIMUS offers may be categorized into three groups: Government Program Management and Operations, Consulting, and Systems. Government Program Management and Operations focuses on having a measurable impact on the lives of the citizens we help government serve. The insights of MAXIMUS Consulting, and the technological innovations advanced through Systems, help government gain program efficiencies and pursue improvements that in turn benefit citizens. “

Several other equities analysts have also recently issued reports on MMS. Maxim Group boosted their price target on shares of Maximus from $71.00 to $74.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 4th. Raymond James Financial Inc. cut shares of Maximus from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 9th. Sidoti cut shares of Maximus from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $55.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Tuesday, November 15th. Finally, Jefferies Group restated a “buy” rating and issued a $65.00 price objective (down previously from $67.00) on shares of Maximus in a report on Wednesday, November 16th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Maximus has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $61.89.

Analyst Recommendations for Maximus (NYSE:MMS)

Shares of Maximus (NYSE:MMS) opened at 56.26 on Wednesday. Maximus has a 52 week low of $43.69 and a 52 week high of $61.68. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $53.84 and its 200 day moving average is $56.35. The stock has a market cap of $3.64 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.91 and a beta of 1.15.

Maximus (NYSE:MMS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 10th. The company reported $0.77 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.72 by $0.05. Maximus had a net margin of 7.42% and a return on equity of 24.93%. The company had revenue of $623.10 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $610.65 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.53 earnings per share. Maximus’s quarterly revenue was up 7.7% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts forecast that Maximus will post $3.00 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, November 30th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, November 15th will be paid a $0.045 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, November 10th. This represents a $0.18 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.32%. Maximus’s dividend payout ratio is presently 6.67%.

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In related news, President Bruce Caswell sold 20,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $56.99, for a total transaction of $1,139,800.00. Following the transaction, the president now owns 36,386 shares in the company, valued at $2,073,638.14. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CFO Richard John Nadeau acquired 1,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 11th. The shares were bought at an average price of $50.10 per share, for a total transaction of $50,100.00. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 10,256 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $513,825.60. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 3.60% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. D.A. Davidson & CO. increased its position in shares of Maximus by 4.6% in the third quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. now owns 79,470 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,491,000 after buying an additional 3,463 shares during the period. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD increased its position in shares of Maximus by 3.2% in the third quarter. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD now owns 759,798 shares of the company’s stock worth $42,974,000 after buying an additional 23,698 shares during the period. Sawtooth Solutions LLC increased its position in shares of Maximus by 14.0% in the third quarter. Sawtooth Solutions LLC now owns 6,246 shares of the company’s stock worth $353,000 after buying an additional 766 shares during the period. Credit Suisse AG increased its position in shares of Maximus by 0.8% in the third quarter. Credit Suisse AG now owns 187,719 shares of the company’s stock worth $10,618,000 after buying an additional 1,417 shares during the period. Finally, Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. increased its position in shares of Maximus by 65.2% in the third quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. now owns 25,346 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,434,000 after buying an additional 10,000 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 99.90% of the company’s stock.

Maximus Company Profile

MAXIMUS, Inc provides business process services (BPS) to Government health and human services agencies. The Company is primarily focused on operating Government-sponsored programs, such as Medicaid, children’s health insurance program (CHIP), health insurance exchanges and other health care reform initiatives, Medicare, welfare-to-work, child support services and other Government programs.

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