Aetna Sees Unusually Large Options Volume (AET)

Aetna (NYSE:AET) saw some unusual options trading activity on Tuesday. Stock investors acquired 5,121 put options on the stock. This is an increase of 754% compared to the typical daily volume of 600 put options.

Aetna opened at $177.47 on Thursday, Marketbeat reports. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.47, a quick ratio of 0.73 and a current ratio of 0.73. Aetna has a 12 month low of $176.69 and a 12 month high of $177.56. The stock has a market capitalization of $58.16 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.00, a PEG ratio of 1.50 and a beta of 0.64.

Aetna (NYSE:AET) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, May 1st. The company reported $3.19 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $2.97 by $0.22. Aetna had a net margin of 5.76% and a return on equity of 21.42%. The firm had revenue of $15.34 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $15.32 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $2.71 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 1.1% compared to the same quarter last year. equities research analysts forecast that Aetna will post 11.06 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, April 27th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, April 12th were issued a $0.50 dividend. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.13%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, April 11th. Aetna’s dividend payout ratio is currently 20.28%.

Several brokerages have recently weighed in on AET. Credit Suisse Group dropped their price objective on shares of Aetna from $208.00 to $194.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research report on Monday. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Aetna from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, May 3rd. Cantor Fitzgerald raised shares of Aetna from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 1st. ValuEngine raised shares of Aetna from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, February 2nd. Finally, Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $205.00 price target on shares of Aetna in a research report on Wednesday, January 31st. Eight investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $192.31.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in AET. Farallon Capital Management LLC bought a new position in Aetna in the 4th quarter valued at about $940,734,000. Wells Fargo & Company MN increased its holdings in Aetna by 101.0% in the 1st quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 2,797,748 shares of the company’s stock valued at $472,819,000 after buying an additional 1,405,859 shares during the period. Abrams Capital Management L.P. bought a new position in Aetna in the 1st quarter valued at about $233,220,000. Deutsche Bank AG increased its holdings in Aetna by 57.5% in the 4th quarter. Deutsche Bank AG now owns 2,704,723 shares of the company’s stock valued at $487,900,000 after buying an additional 987,156 shares during the period. Finally, Alpine Associates Management Inc. bought a new position in Aetna in the 4th quarter valued at about $159,933,000. 87.01% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Aetna Company Profile

Aetna Inc operates as a health care benefits company in the United States. It operates through three segments: Health Care, Group Insurance, and Large Case Pensions. The Health Care segment offers medical, pharmacy benefit management service, dental, behavioral health, and vision plans on an insured and employer-funded basis.

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