Deutsche Bank began coverage on shares of Express Scripts (NASDAQ:ESRX) in a report issued on Monday, December 4th, MarketBeat Ratings reports. The firm issued a buy rating and a $75.00 price objective on the stock.
Other analysts have also recently issued research reports about the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Express Scripts from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $64.00 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, October 16th. ValuEngine raised Express Scripts from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Monday, October 2nd. Jefferies Group set a $72.00 price objective on Express Scripts and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 29th. Robert W. Baird reaffirmed a hold rating and issued a $56.00 price objective on shares of Express Scripts in a research note on Friday, September 1st. Finally, Mizuho set a $67.00 price objective on Express Scripts and gave the stock a hold rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 24th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating, eight have issued a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $74.65.
Shares of Express Scripts (ESRX) traded down $0.35 on Monday, reaching $74.64. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,739,992 shares, compared to its average volume of 4,172,764. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.86, a quick ratio of 0.61 and a current ratio of 0.73. The stock has a market capitalization of $42,472.31, a PE ratio of 12.30, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.10 and a beta of 0.88. Express Scripts has a fifty-two week low of $55.80 and a fifty-two week high of $75.64.
Express Scripts declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase plan on Monday, December 18th that permits the company to buyback 45,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization permits the company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are typically an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.
In other news, VP Christine Houston sold 10,104 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.08, for a total value of $708,088.32. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 87,400 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $6,124,992. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Timothy C. Wentworth acquired 8,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 31st. The stock was bought at an average cost of $61.13 per share, with a total value of $489,040.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the chief executive officer now directly owns 98,628 shares in the company, valued at $6,029,129.64. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 0.68% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Atlantic Trust Group LLC raised its holdings in shares of Express Scripts by 0.8% in the third quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC now owns 1,797,287 shares of the company’s stock worth $113,805,000 after buying an additional 14,193 shares during the period. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC raised its holdings in shares of Express Scripts by 25.8% in the third quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 1,551,526 shares of the company’s stock worth $98,243,000 after buying an additional 317,878 shares during the period. Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC raised its holdings in shares of Express Scripts by 374.2% in the third quarter. Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC now owns 4,766 shares of the company’s stock worth $302,000 after buying an additional 3,761 shares during the period. Steward Partners Investment Advisory LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Express Scripts in the third quarter worth approximately $467,000. Finally, Optimum Investment Advisors increased its holdings in Express Scripts by 64.7% during the 3rd quarter. Optimum Investment Advisors now owns 5,471 shares of the company’s stock worth $346,000 after purchasing an additional 2,150 shares during the period. 88.28% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
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About Express Scripts
Express Scripts, Inc is a pharmacy benefit management (PBM) company in North America, offering a range of services to its clients, which include health insurers, third-party administrators, employers, union-sponsored benefit plans, workers’ compensation plans and government health programs. It operates in two segments: PBM and Emerging Markets (EM).
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