Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Encompass Health (EHC) to Sell

Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Encompass Health (AMEX:EHC) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report issued on Wednesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Encompass Health Corporation provides inpatient rehabilitation hospitals and home-based care services. It offers facility-based and home-based patient care through its network of inpatient rehabilitation hospitals, home health agencies and hospice agencies. Encompass Health Corporation, formerly known as HealthSouth Corporation, is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama. “

Other analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. Mizuho reissued a buy rating and set a $82.00 price objective on shares of Encompass Health in a report on Thursday, July 26th. Piper Jaffray Companies raised shares of Encompass Health from a neutral rating to an overweight rating in a report on Thursday, July 26th. Credit Suisse Group boosted their price objective on shares of Encompass Health from $66.00 to $80.00 and gave the stock an outperform rating in a report on Thursday, July 26th. Finally, SunTrust Banks reissued a buy rating and set a $82.00 price objective on shares of Encompass Health in a report on Friday, July 20th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has assigned a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $71.10.

Shares of Encompass Health stock opened at $57.67 on Wednesday. Encompass Health has a 52-week low of $40.86 and a 52-week high of $59.29. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.89, a current ratio of 1.34 and a quick ratio of 1.34.

Encompass Health (AMEX:EHC) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 25th. The company reported $0.99 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.83 by $0.16. The firm had revenue of $1.07 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.03 billion. Encompass Health had a net margin of 8.67% and a return on equity of 23.56%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 10.5% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, equities analysts expect that Encompass Health will post 2.72 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 15th. Investors of record on Monday, October 1st will be issued a dividend of $0.27 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, September 28th. This represents a $1.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.87%. This is an increase from Encompass Health’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.25.

In other Encompass Health news, insider Andrew L. Price sold 9,457 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.04, for a total value of $756,938.28. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Cheryl B. Levy sold 28,955 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.00, for a total transaction of $2,258,490.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.60% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in EHC. Harvest Fund Management Co. Ltd purchased a new stake in shares of Encompass Health in the second quarter valued at about $107,000. Bridgeworth LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Encompass Health in the second quarter valued at about $127,000. Point72 Asia Hong Kong Ltd purchased a new stake in shares of Encompass Health in the first quarter valued at about $142,000. Meeder Asset Management Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Encompass Health by 97.0% in the second quarter. Meeder Asset Management Inc. now owns 2,092 shares of the company’s stock valued at $142,000 after purchasing an additional 1,030 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Mount Yale Investment Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Encompass Health in the first quarter valued at about $143,000. 93.18% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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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