Molina Healthcare Inc (NYSE:MOH) shares were up 0.1% on Monday after Zacks Investment Research upgraded the stock from a sell rating to a hold rating. The stock traded as high as $79.90 and last traded at $79.28. Approximately 708,776 shares changed hands during mid-day trading, a decline of 54% from the average daily volume of 1,557,115 shares. The stock had previously closed at $79.18.

According to Zacks, “Molina Healthcare’s third-quarter 2017 adjusted earnings not only surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate but also grew  from the year-ago quarter on the back of higher premium revenues. Its shares have outperformed the industry in the last year. The company’s growing top line, backed by consistent membership rise, positions it for long- term growth. Its inorganic strategies also remain accretive to the revenue base. It has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for the 2018 earnings being revised upward in last seven days. The company has begun an enterprise-wide restructuring program to reduce expenses and improve overall operational efficiency. However, Molina Healthcare suffers from rising medical care costs along with acute dependence on debt financing that have resulted in higher interest expenses, draining the bottom line.”

A number of other analysts also recently weighed in on MOH. ValuEngine downgraded Molina Healthcare from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 11th. Credit Suisse Group restated an “underperform” rating and issued a $53.00 price target (up from $50.00) on shares of Molina Healthcare in a research note on Friday, July 14th. Bank of America Corporation lifted their price target on Molina Healthcare from $59.00 to $60.00 and gave the company an “underperform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 14th. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “hold” rating and issued a $72.00 price target on shares of Molina Healthcare in a research note on Friday, July 14th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus restated a “sell” rating and issued a $60.00 price target on shares of Molina Healthcare in a research note on Friday, July 14th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $64.30.

In other Molina Healthcare news, COO Terry Bayer sold 9,077 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, November 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $77.45, for a total transaction of $703,013.65. Following the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 74,478 shares in the company, valued at $5,768,321.10. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Daniel Cooperman sold 4,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $78.79, for a total value of $354,555.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 9,087 shares in the company, valued at $715,964.73. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 367,208 shares of company stock worth $23,910,329. 6.20% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in MOH. Tavio Capital LLC raised its holdings in shares of Molina Healthcare by 418.0% in the third quarter. Tavio Capital LLC now owns 537,192 shares of the company’s stock worth $36,937,000 after acquiring an additional 433,485 shares during the last quarter. Acadian Asset Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Molina Healthcare by 6,812.6% in the second quarter. Acadian Asset Management LLC now owns 415,587 shares of the company’s stock worth $28,748,000 after acquiring an additional 409,575 shares during the last quarter. Koch Industries Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Molina Healthcare in the second quarter worth $323,000. York Capital Management Global Advisors LLC acquired a new position in shares of Molina Healthcare in the second quarter worth $19,289,000. Finally, Naya Capital Management UK Ltd. raised its holdings in shares of Molina Healthcare by 225.7% in the second quarter. Naya Capital Management UK Ltd. now owns 363,093 shares of the company’s stock worth $25,119,000 after acquiring an additional 251,600 shares during the last quarter. 95.88% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

The stock has a market capitalization of $4,380.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.59 and a beta of 0.91. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.06, a current ratio of 1.29 and a quick ratio of 1.24.

Molina Healthcare (NYSE:MOH) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 2nd. The company reported ($1.62) earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.23 by ($1.85). Molina Healthcare had a positive return on equity of 17.76% and a negative net margin of 1.76%. The company had revenue of $5.03 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.95 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.85 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 10.7% compared to the same quarter last year. equities research analysts predict that Molina Healthcare Inc will post -2.14 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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Molina Healthcare Company Profile

Molina Healthcare, Inc offers Medicaid-related solutions for low-income families and individuals, and assists government agencies in their administration of the Medicaid program. The Company operates through three segments: Health Plans, Molina Medicaid Solutions and Other, which includes its Pathways Health and Community Support LLC (Pathways) business.

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