Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET) was downgraded by equities research analysts at BidaskClub from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report issued on Wednesday.

Other equities analysts also recently issued reports about the company. UBS AG reissued a “buy” rating and set a $160.00 price objective (up from $147.00) on shares of Aetna in a research report on Wednesday, May 17th. Argus reissued a “buy” rating and set a $165.00 price objective (up from $145.00) on shares of Aetna in a research report on Tuesday, May 30th. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “buy” rating and set a $155.00 price objective on shares of Aetna in a research report on Wednesday, May 17th. Deutsche Bank AG boosted their price objective on Aetna from $144.00 to $157.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 13th. Finally, Cleveland Research raised Aetna from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, May 11th. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eighteen have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $152.84.

Shares of Aetna (NYSE:AET) opened at 155.73 on Wednesday. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $151.67 and its 200 day moving average is $135.46. The stock has a market capitalization of $51.66 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 47.49 and a beta of 0.54. Aetna has a 52-week low of $104.59 and a 52-week high of $155.97.

Aetna (NYSE:AET) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, May 2nd. The company reported $2.71 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.36 by $0.35. Aetna had a return on equity of 17.75% and a net margin of 1.84%. The business had revenue of $15.17 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $15.39 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $2.30 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.4% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts expect that Aetna will post $8.99 earnings per share for the current year.

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In other Aetna news, EVP Margaret M. Mccarthy sold 27,028 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, June 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $149.23, for a total value of $4,033,388.44. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 33,563 shares in the company, valued at $5,008,606.49. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Chairman Mark T. Bertolini sold 103,547 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $140.79, for a total value of $14,578,382.13. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now owns 659,888 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $92,905,631.52. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.90% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Quadrature Capital Ltd purchased a new stake in shares of Aetna during the fourth quarter worth $662,000. Ibex Wealth Advisors raised its position in Aetna by 3.5% in the fourth quarter. Ibex Wealth Advisors now owns 15,651 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,918,000 after buying an additional 526 shares during the last quarter. Orbis Allan Gray Ltd bought a new position in Aetna during the fourth quarter worth about $335,443,000. Hudson Bay Capital Management LP bought a new position in Aetna during the fourth quarter worth about $3,100,000. Finally, Pegasus Partners Ltd. raised its position in Aetna by 2.2% in the fourth quarter. Pegasus Partners Ltd. now owns 7,013 shares of the company’s stock worth $870,000 after buying an additional 153 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 91.79% of the company’s stock.

Aetna Company Profile

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.

Analyst Recommendations for Aetna (NYSE:AET)

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