Stock Traders Buy High Volume of Put Options on Encompass Health (EHC)

Encompass Health Corp (AMEX:EHC) saw some unusual options trading activity on Wednesday. Investors bought 688 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 942% compared to the average volume of 66 put options.

Several research firms have recently issued reports on EHC. Stephens reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $55.00 price objective on shares of Encompass Health in a report on Friday. Robert W. Baird restated a “buy” rating and set a $59.00 target price on shares of Encompass Health in a report on Friday. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Encompass Health from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday. SunTrust Banks set a $58.00 target price on shares of Encompass Health and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, December 21st. Finally, William Blair restated an “outperform” rating on shares of Encompass Health in a report on Tuesday, November 21st. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $53.11.

Encompass Health (AMEX EHC) opened at $51.46 on Friday. Encompass Health has a 52 week low of $38.24 and a 52 week high of $52.58. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.89, a current ratio of 1.34 and a quick ratio of 1.34. The company has a market cap of $4,960.00, a P/E ratio of 18.78, a P/E/G ratio of 1.70 and a beta of 0.54.

Encompass Health (AMEX:EHC) last released its earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The company reported $0.66 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.65 by $0.01. Encompass Health had a net margin of 8.67% and a return on equity of 23.56%. The company had revenue of $995.60 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $985.75 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.65 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 7.4% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts forecast that Encompass Health will post 2.72 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, January 2nd will be given a $0.25 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, December 29th. This represents a $1.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.94%. Encompass Health’s payout ratio is 36.50%.

In other news, Director Yvonne M. Curl purchased 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 1st. The shares were bought at an average price of $45.95 per share, for a total transaction of $45,950.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now owns 64,144 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,947,416.80. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. 1.60% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A hedge fund recently bought a new stake in Encompass Health stock. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC bought a new position in Encompass Health Corp (AMEX:EHC) in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor bought 23,420 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,157,000. 93.18% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Encompass Health

Encompass Health Corporation, formerly HealthSouth Corporation, is a provider of post-acute healthcare services, offering both facility-based and home-based post-acute services in 35 states and Puerto Rico through its network of inpatient rehabilitation hospitals, home health agencies and hospice agencies.

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