Brokerages forecast that Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) will post $1.25 earnings per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Six analysts have made estimates for Anthem’s earnings, with the lowest EPS estimate coming in at $1.16 and the highest estimate coming in at $1.30. Anthem reported earnings of $1.76 per share in the same quarter last year, which would indicate a negative year over year growth rate of 29%. The company is expected to issue its next earnings results on Wednesday, February 7th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Anthem will report full-year earnings of $11.97 per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from $11.90 to $12.00. For the next financial year, analysts expect that the firm will post earnings of $12.90 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $12.50 to $13.20. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share calculations are a mean average based on a survey of research analysts that that provide coverage for Anthem.

Anthem (NYSE:ANTM) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 25th. The company reported $2.65 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.40 by $0.25. Anthem had a return on equity of 12.97% and a net margin of 3.35%. The company had revenue of $22.10 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $22.10 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $2.45 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.6% compared to the same quarter last year.

A number of brokerages recently weighed in on ANTM. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Anthem from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 23rd. Leerink Swann reaffirmed an “outperform” rating on shares of Anthem in a research report on Tuesday, November 7th. BidaskClub raised Anthem from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. Jefferies Group LLC reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $204.00 price objective on shares of Anthem in a research report on Sunday, August 20th. Finally, Cantor Fitzgerald reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $215.00 price objective on shares of Anthem in a research report on Thursday, September 14th. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $201.07.

In other news, SVP Ronald W. Penczek sold 978 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $217.42, for a total value of $212,636.76. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 1,222 shares in the company, valued at $265,687.24. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Julie A. Hill sold 1,602 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $215.70, for a total value of $345,551.40. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 35,322 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $7,618,955.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 65,955 shares of company stock valued at $13,179,953. 0.36% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in ANTM. First Interstate Bank raised its stake in shares of Anthem by 1,910.7% in the third quarter. First Interstate Bank now owns 563 shares of the company’s stock worth $107,000 after purchasing an additional 535 shares during the last quarter. Captrust Financial Advisors purchased a new position in shares of Anthem in the second quarter worth about $128,000. Salem Investment Counselors Inc. raised its stake in shares of Anthem by 1.4% in the second quarter. Salem Investment Counselors Inc. now owns 710 shares of the company’s stock worth $134,000 after purchasing an additional 10 shares during the last quarter. Harding Loevner LP purchased a new position in shares of Anthem in the second quarter worth about $151,000. Finally, Wealthcare Advisory Partners LLC purchased a new position in shares of Anthem in the third quarter worth about $154,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 87.47% of the company’s stock.

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Shares of Anthem (ANTM) opened at $220.42 on Friday. Anthem has a 12-month low of $140.34 and a 12-month high of $222.24. The firm has a market capitalization of $56,595.15, a PE ratio of 17.69, a P/E/G ratio of 1.73 and a beta of 0.77. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.53, a quick ratio of 1.51 and a current ratio of 1.51.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 21st. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, December 5th will be paid a $0.70 dividend. This represents a $2.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.27%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, December 4th. Anthem’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 25.32%.

About Anthem

Anthem, Inc is a health benefits company. The Company operates through three segments: Commercial and Specialty Business, Government Business and Other. It offers a spectrum of network-based managed care plans to large and small employer, individual, Medicaid and Medicare markets. Its managed care plans include preferred provider organizations; health maintenance organizations; point-of-service plans; indemnity plans and other hybrid plans, including consumer-driven health plans; and hospital only and limited benefit products.

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