Express Scripts Holding (ESRX) Receives Average Rating of “Hold” from Analysts

Express Scripts Holding (NASDAQ:ESRX) has received a consensus rating of “Hold” from the twenty-six brokerages that are covering the firm, MarketBeat Ratings reports. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating, eight have issued a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating on the company. The average 1-year target price among analysts that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $78.45.

Several equities research analysts recently issued reports on the company. Mizuho set a $67.00 price target on Express Scripts and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 24th. Raymond James Financial reissued a “sell” rating on shares of Express Scripts in a research report on Friday, December 15th. Evercore ISI assumed coverage on Express Scripts in a research report on Thursday, January 4th. They set an “in-line” rating and a $78.00 price target on the stock. Robert W. Baird reissued a “buy” rating and set a $92.00 price target (up from $81.00) on shares of Express Scripts in a research report on Tuesday, January 9th. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein raised Express Scripts from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 6th.

In related news, CEO Timothy C. Wentworth acquired 8,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 31st. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $61.13 per share, for a total transaction of $489,040.00. Following the purchase, the chief executive officer now directly owns 98,628 shares in the company, valued at $6,029,129.64. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, VP Glen D. Stettin sold 3,449 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, January 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $81.00, for a total value of $279,369.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 33,715 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,730,915. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders have sold 17,644 shares of company stock valued at $1,289,609. 0.68% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Bank of Nova Scotia Trust Co. bought a new position in shares of Express Scripts in the third quarter worth $120,000. Monroe Bank & Trust MI grew its stake in shares of Express Scripts by 74.8% in the third quarter. Monroe Bank & Trust MI now owns 2,266 shares of the company’s stock worth $156,000 after purchasing an additional 970 shares in the last quarter. Capstone Investment Advisors Netherlands B.V. grew its stake in shares of Express Scripts by 49.3% in the second quarter. Capstone Investment Advisors Netherlands B.V. now owns 2,797 shares of the company’s stock worth $179,000 after purchasing an additional 924 shares in the last quarter. Nelson Roberts Investment Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of Express Scripts in the third quarter worth $193,000. Finally, Diamond Hill Capital Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Express Scripts in the third quarter worth $206,000. 88.21% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Shares of Express Scripts (ESRX) traded up $0.22 on Friday, hitting $80.22. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 3,648,742 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,702,156. Express Scripts has a one year low of $55.80 and a one year high of $81.75. The firm has a market cap of $45,309.84, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.22, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.89 and a beta of 0.87. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.86, a quick ratio of 0.61 and a current ratio of 0.73.

Express Scripts (NASDAQ:ESRX) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 24th. The company reported $1.90 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.90. The business had revenue of $24.68 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $25.68 billion. Express Scripts had a return on equity of 25.46% and a net margin of 3.64%. The business’s revenue was down 2.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $1.74 EPS. analysts anticipate that Express Scripts will post 7.04 earnings per share for the current year.

Express Scripts declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Monday, December 18th that authorizes the company to buyback 45,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are generally an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

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About Express Scripts

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).

Analyst Recommendations for Express Scripts (NASDAQ:ESRX)

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