WellCare Health Plans (WCG) Downgraded to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of WellCare Health Plans (NYSE:WCG) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report issued on Wednesday, March 14th.

According to Zacks, “WellCare Health’s shares have outperformed the industry in a year’s time. The company’s healthy balance sheet continues to support its operational excellence. The company has also been witnessing revenue growth over the last six years. Following the strong 2017 results, the company raised its guidance for 2018. The company has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2018 earnings being revised upward in the past 60 days. However, its rising level of debt hurts the bottom line. Continuous increase in the total expenses also weighs on the margins.”

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WCG has been the subject of a number of other reports. Deutsche Bank increased their price target on WellCare Health Plans to $240.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Monday, November 20th. Cantor Fitzgerald reiterated a buy rating and set a $235.00 price objective on shares of WellCare Health Plans in a research report on Monday, December 18th. Goldman Sachs assumed coverage on WellCare Health Plans in a research report on Wednesday, January 3rd. They set a buy rating and a $255.00 price objective for the company. Bank of America increased their price objective on WellCare Health Plans from $210.00 to $215.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a research report on Friday, November 17th. Finally, Morgan Stanley increased their price objective on WellCare Health Plans from $214.00 to $220.00 and gave the company an equal weight rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 7th. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $217.86.

NYSE WCG traded down $5.29 on Wednesday, reaching $191.00. 313,072 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 367,408. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.49, a quick ratio of 1.31 and a current ratio of 1.31. The firm has a market cap of $8,505.04, a P/E ratio of 22.39, a PEG ratio of 1.35 and a beta of 0.90. WellCare Health Plans has a 12 month low of $142.53 and a 12 month high of $221.75.

WellCare Health Plans (NYSE:WCG) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, February 6th. The company reported $0.32 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.21 by $0.11. The firm had revenue of $4.35 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.32 billion. WellCare Health Plans had a return on equity of 17.10% and a net margin of 2.20%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 23.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.03 EPS. research analysts predict that WellCare Health Plans will post 9.83 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB purchased a new stake in shares of WellCare Health Plans in the fourth quarter valued at $812,000. Banco de Sabadell S.A purchased a new stake in shares of WellCare Health Plans in the fourth quarter valued at $1,054,000. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of WellCare Health Plans in the fourth quarter valued at $5,665,000. Gotham Asset Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of WellCare Health Plans in the fourth quarter valued at $202,000. Finally, Redmile Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of WellCare Health Plans in the fourth quarter valued at $29,030,000. Institutional investors own 98.23% of the company’s stock.

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WellCare Health Plans Company Profile

WellCare Health Plans, Inc is a managed care company. The Company focuses on government-sponsored managed care services, primarily through Medicaid, Medicare Advantage (MA) and Medicare Prescription Drug Plans (PDPs), to families, children, seniors and individuals with medical needs. The Company operates through three segments: Medicaid Health Plans, Medicare Health Plans and Medicare PDPs.

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