Seaward Management Limited Partnership lessened its holdings in shares of Express Scripts Holding (NASDAQ:ESRX) by 7.5% during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 10,246 shares of the company’s stock after selling 831 shares during the quarter. Seaward Management Limited Partnership’s holdings in Express Scripts were worth $764,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also made changes to their positions in the business. Dodge & Cox boosted its stake in shares of Express Scripts by 25.7% in the second quarter. Dodge & Cox now owns 36,188,517 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,310,275,000 after buying an additional 7,388,021 shares during the period. Northern Trust Corp lifted its stake in Express Scripts by 12.2% during the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 11,068,777 shares of the company’s stock worth $706,629,000 after purchasing an additional 1,206,980 shares during the last quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. lifted its stake in Express Scripts by 23.5% during the third quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 5,233,327 shares of the company’s stock worth $331,374,000 after purchasing an additional 996,816 shares during the last quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. lifted its stake in Express Scripts by 8.4% during the second quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 11,880,919 shares of the company’s stock worth $758,480,000 after purchasing an additional 922,406 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Pzena Investment Management LLC lifted its stake in Express Scripts by 23.6% during the third quarter. Pzena Investment Management LLC now owns 3,509,800 shares of the company’s stock worth $222,241,000 after purchasing an additional 670,922 shares during the last quarter. 87.46% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
A number of brokerages have recently commented on ESRX. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Express Scripts from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $82.00 price target for the company in a research note on Wednesday. Mizuho set a $67.00 price objective on Express Scripts and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 24th. Sanford C. Bernstein downgraded Express Scripts from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and increased their price objective for the company from $55.80 to $77.50 in a report on Tuesday, January 30th. BidaskClub downgraded Express Scripts from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, February 2nd. Finally, Raymond James Financial reiterated a “sell” rating on shares of Express Scripts in a report on Friday, December 15th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating, ten have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $79.29.
Express Scripts announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share buyback program on Monday, December 18th that allows the company to repurchase 45,000,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are typically an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.
In other news, VP Glen D. Stettin sold 3,449 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, January 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $81.00, for a total transaction of $279,369.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 33,715 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,730,915. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, VP Christine Houston sold 10,104 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.08, for a total transaction of $708,088.32. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 87,400 shares in the company, valued at approximately $6,124,992. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 17,001 shares of company stock valued at $1,249,505 over the last ninety days. 0.68% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
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Express Scripts Profile
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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