Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Express Scripts Holding (NASDAQ:ESRX) by 25.3% during the fourth quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 43,146 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 8,724 shares during the quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc.’s holdings in Express Scripts were worth $3,222,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Swedbank bought a new stake in Express Scripts during the fourth quarter worth approximately $111,016,000. Two Sigma Advisers LP raised its holdings in Express Scripts by 143.4% during the fourth quarter. Two Sigma Advisers LP now owns 1,782,736 shares of the company’s stock worth $133,063,000 after purchasing an additional 1,050,400 shares in the last quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. raised its holdings in Express Scripts by 23.5% during the third quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 5,233,327 shares of the company’s stock worth $331,374,000 after purchasing an additional 996,816 shares in the last quarter. Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership raised its holdings in Express Scripts by 31.9% during the fourth quarter. Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership now owns 3,450,844 shares of the company’s stock worth $257,571,000 after purchasing an additional 835,464 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Two Sigma Investments LP raised its holdings in Express Scripts by 17,710.3% during the fourth quarter. Two Sigma Investments LP now owns 704,412 shares of the company’s stock worth $52,577,000 after purchasing an additional 708,412 shares in the last quarter. 89.44% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
ESRX stock opened at $72.42 on Wednesday. Express Scripts Holding has a 52-week low of $55.80 and a 52-week high of $85.07. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.83, a quick ratio of 0.55 and a current ratio of 0.67. The firm has a market cap of $40,964.68, a P/E ratio of 10.25, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.89 and a beta of 0.94.
Express Scripts (NASDAQ:ESRX) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, February 27th. The company reported $2.16 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $2.09 by $0.07. Express Scripts had a net margin of 4.51% and a return on equity of 25.19%. The firm had revenue of $25.38 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $25.07 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.88 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 2.1% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts anticipate that Express Scripts Holding will post 9.35 earnings per share for the current year.
Express Scripts declared that its board has approved a stock repurchase plan on Monday, December 18th that authorizes the company to buyback 45,000,000 outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the company to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.
In other Express Scripts news, VP Glen D. Stettin sold 3,449 shares of Express Scripts stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, January 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $81.00, for a total transaction of $279,369.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 33,715 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,730,915. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Christine Houston sold 19,889 shares of Express Scripts stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, March 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $76.69, for a total transaction of $1,525,287.41. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 31,681 shares of company stock worth $2,435,102. Corporate insiders own 0.68% of the company’s stock.
Several research firms have issued reports on ESRX. BidaskClub lowered shares of Express Scripts from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, March 14th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Express Scripts from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, March 13th. Sanford C. Bernstein upgraded shares of Express Scripts from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Monday, March 12th. Wells Fargo upgraded shares of Express Scripts from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Friday, March 9th. Finally, Raymond James Financial upgraded shares of Express Scripts from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 8th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have issued a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $81.97.
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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).
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