Investors Buy UnitedHealth Group (UNH) on Weakness

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Traders bought shares of UnitedHealth Group Inc (NYSE:UNH) on weakness during trading hours on Thursday. $543.15 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $469.43 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $73.72 million into the stock. Of all companies tracked, UnitedHealth Group had the 5th highest net in-flow for the day. UnitedHealth Group traded down ($10.61) for the day and closed at $235.42

A number of brokerages have recently commented on UNH. Stephens began coverage on UnitedHealth Group in a report on Monday, January 14th. They issued an “overweight” rating and a $287.00 price target on the stock. ValuEngine lowered UnitedHealth Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded UnitedHealth Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $279.00 price target on the stock in a report on Saturday, January 5th. Cantor Fitzgerald restated a “buy” rating and issued a $310.00 price target on shares of UnitedHealth Group in a report on Tuesday, January 15th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group restated a “buy” rating and issued a $310.00 price target on shares of UnitedHealth Group in a report on Friday, February 8th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $297.80.

The firm has a market capitalization of $236.08 billion, a PE ratio of 18.28, a PEG ratio of 1.27 and a beta of 0.79. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.64, a current ratio of 0.73 and a quick ratio of 0.73.

UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, January 15th. The healthcare conglomerate reported $3.28 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $3.20 by $0.08. UnitedHealth Group had a return on equity of 24.38% and a net margin of 5.30%. The business had revenue of $58.42 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $58.01 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $2.59 earnings per share. UnitedHealth Group’s revenue was up 12.2% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts expect that UnitedHealth Group Inc will post 14.62 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, March 19th. Investors of record on Monday, March 11th were issued a dividend of $0.90 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, March 8th. This represents a $3.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.53%. UnitedHealth Group’s payout ratio is presently 27.95%.

In related news, Director Richard T. Burke sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, March 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $257.32, for a total transaction of $1,286,600.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 182,454 shares in the company, valued at $46,949,063.28. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, Director Richard T. Burke sold 15,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, January 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $260.55, for a total value of $3,908,250.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 193,872 shares in the company, valued at approximately $50,513,349.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 32,930 shares of company stock worth $8,495,383 in the last quarter. 0.87% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Crewe Advisors LLC acquired a new position in UnitedHealth Group during the fourth quarter worth approximately $25,000. Pearl River Capital LLC acquired a new position in UnitedHealth Group during the fourth quarter worth approximately $35,000. Canton Hathaway LLC acquired a new position in UnitedHealth Group during the first quarter worth approximately $36,000. Ipswich Investment Management Co. Inc. acquired a new position in UnitedHealth Group during the fourth quarter worth approximately $40,000. Finally, OLD Second National Bank of Aurora increased its position in UnitedHealth Group by 70.0% during the fourth quarter. OLD Second National Bank of Aurora now owns 170 shares of the healthcare conglomerate’s stock worth $42,000 after buying an additional 70 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 86.68% of the company’s stock.

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UnitedHealth Group Company Profile (NYSE:UNH)

UnitedHealth Group Incorporated operates as a diversified health care company in the United States. It operates through four segments: UnitedHealthcare, OptumHealth, OptumInsight, and OptumRx. The UnitedHealthcare segment offers consumer-oriented health benefit plans and services for national employers, public sector employers, mid-sized employers, small businesses, and individuals; health and well-being services to individuals age 50 and older, addressing their needs for preventive and acute health care services, as well as services dealing with chronic disease and other specialized issues for older individuals; and Medicaid plans, Children's Health Insurance Program, and health care programs; and health and dental benefits.

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