First Mercantile Trust Co. lowered its position in Centene Corp. (NYSE:CNC) by 43.4% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 13,300 shares of the company’s stock after selling 10,200 shares during the period. First Mercantile Trust Co.’s holdings in Centene Corp. were worth $949,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently bought and sold shares of CNC. State Street Corp increased its position in Centene Corp. by 82.3% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 7,158,347 shares of the company’s stock valued at $440,733,000 after buying an additional 3,230,862 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. increased its position in Centene Corp. by 30.1% in the first quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 4,534,338 shares of the company’s stock valued at $279,179,000 after buying an additional 1,048,631 shares in the last quarter. William Blair Investment Management LLC increased its position in Centene Corp. by 1.9% in the second quarter. William Blair Investment Management LLC now owns 4,192,605 shares of the company’s stock valued at $299,226,000 after buying an additional 78,481 shares in the last quarter. Jennison Associates LLC increased its position in Centene Corp. by 1.2% in the second quarter. Jennison Associates LLC now owns 3,806,765 shares of the company’s stock valued at $271,689,000 after buying an additional 43,675 shares in the last quarter. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased its position in Centene Corp. by 72.8% in the first quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 2,919,446 shares of the company’s stock valued at $179,748,000 after buying an additional 1,230,263 shares in the last quarter. 92.90% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Centene Corp. (NYSE:CNC) opened at 67.30 on Monday. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $68.99 and a 200 day moving average price of $64.90. The company has a market cap of $11.49 billion, a PE ratio of 25.97 and a beta of 1.00. Centene Corp. has a one year low of $47.36 and a one year high of $75.57.

Centene Corp. (NYSE:CNC) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The company reported $1.29 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.09 by $0.20. The company earned $10.90 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $10.80 billion. Centene Corp. had a net margin of 1.19% and a return on equity of 14.27%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 97.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.72 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts anticipate that Centene Corp. will post $4.37 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Several research analysts have issued reports on CNC shares. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Centene Corp. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, August 1st. FBR & Co reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $90.00 price objective on shares of Centene Corp. in a report on Tuesday, July 26th. Wells Fargo & Co. reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Centene Corp. in a report on Monday, June 20th. Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Centene Corp. in a report on Tuesday, June 28th. Finally, Leerink Swann downgraded Centene Corp. from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $80.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Tuesday, September 6th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and thirteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $81.00.

In other news, EVP Kenneth Rone Baldwin sold 6,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $71.00, for a total transaction of $426,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Keith H. Williamson sold 4,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.00, for a total transaction of $280,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 4.50% of the company’s stock.

About Centene Corp.

Centene Corporation is a diversified healthcare company that provides programs and services to government sponsored healthcare programs. The Company also provides education and outreach programs to inform and assist members in accessing appropriate healthcare services. The Company operates through two segments.

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