Universal Health Services Inc. (NYSE:UHS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Universal Health's robust inorganic growth story has been significantly contributing to its strong revenue base for long. Moreover, the U.S healthcare industry itself contains immense untapped opportunities with the rising numbers of baby boomers. The company’s Solid Acute-care Platform and Behavioral platform are two major strengths of Universal Health. However, it is severely exposed to integration risk stemmed from its numerous acquisitions. The company’s highly levered balance sheet is another major headwind. Universal Health is also expected to be hurt by margin contraction at both acute care and behavioral hospitals. Highly competitive markets and sluggish macroeconomic situations have again raised concerns for the company. In the recently reported third quarter, adjusted earnings missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate and led to the narrowing of the upper end of its full-year earnings guidance.”

A number of other research firms have also weighed in on UHS. Avondale Partners lowered Universal Health Services from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 9th. Mizuho lowered Universal Health Services from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $133.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Wednesday, November 9th. Bank of America Corp. lowered Universal Health Services from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and reduced their price objective for the company from $150.00 to $135.00 in a research report on Wednesday, November 9th. Wolfe Research began coverage on Universal Health Services in a research report on Tuesday, October 25th. They set a “market perform” rating for the company. Finally, Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $130.00 price objective on shares of Universal Health Services in a research report on Tuesday, August 30th. Ten research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. Universal Health Services currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $141.00.

Analyst Recommendations for Universal Health Services (NYSE:UHS)

Universal Health Services (NYSE:UHS) traded down 0.442% on Monday, reaching $122.625. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 249,561 shares. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $122.15 and its 200-day moving average price is $127.42. Universal Health Services has a 12-month low of $100.82 and a 12-month high of $139.77.

Universal Health Services (NYSE:UHS) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, October 26th. The company reported $1.60 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.68 by $0.08. Universal Health Services had a net margin of 7.31% and a return on equity of 16.35%. The firm earned $2.61 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.40 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.53 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.0% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts predict that Universal Health Services will post $7.34 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 15th. Investors of record on Thursday, December 1st will be given a dividend of $0.10 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 29th. This represents a $0.40 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.32%. Universal Health Services’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 5.63%.

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A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in UHS. LPL Financial LLC bought a new position in Universal Health Services during the first quarter valued at $2,342,000. Arizona State Retirement System increased its position in Universal Health Services by 1.7% in the first quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 24,500 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,056,000 after buying an additional 400 shares during the period. Seven Eight Capital LLC increased its position in Universal Health Services by 200.0% in the first quarter. Seven Eight Capital LLC now owns 2,700 shares of the company’s stock valued at $337,000 after buying an additional 1,800 shares during the period. Royal Bank of Canada increased its position in Universal Health Services by 138.5% in the first quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 98,983 shares of the company’s stock valued at $12,345,000 after buying an additional 57,481 shares during the period. Finally, BlueMountain Capital Management LLC increased its position in Universal Health Services by 21.2% in the first quarter. BlueMountain Capital Management LLC now owns 2,914 shares of the company’s stock valued at $363,000 after buying an additional 510 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 85.69% of the company’s stock.

About Universal Health Services

Universal Health Services, Inc is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, is engaged in owning and operating acute care hospitals, behavioral health centers, surgical hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers and radiation oncology centers. Its segment is acute care hospital services and behavioral healthcare services.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:UHS

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