Anthem Inc (NYSE:ANTM) shares reached a new 52-week high on Friday . The company traded as high as $239.05 and last traded at $235.00, with a volume of 1520300 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $233.89.

ANTM has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Morgan Stanley raised their price target on shares of Anthem from $201.00 to $215.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a report on Thursday, October 26th. Bank of America raised their price target on shares of Anthem from $249.00 to $254.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, November 17th. Credit Suisse Group initiated coverage on shares of Anthem in a report on Thursday, November 2nd. They set an “outperform” rating and a $234.00 price target on the stock. Jefferies Group raised their price target on shares of Anthem from $204.00 to $211.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, October 13th. Finally, B. Riley restated a “buy” rating on shares of Anthem in a report on Wednesday, December 6th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fifteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $205.60.

The company has a market cap of $61,580.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.68, a P/E/G ratio of 1.69 and a beta of 0.79. The company has a quick ratio of 1.51, a current ratio of 1.51 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.53.

Anthem (NYSE:ANTM) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The company reported $2.65 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $2.40 by $0.25. The company had revenue of $22.10 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $22.10 billion. Anthem had a net margin of 3.35% and a return on equity of 12.97%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 4.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the business posted $2.45 EPS. sell-side analysts expect that Anthem Inc will post 11.97 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, December 21st. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, December 5th were given a $0.70 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Monday, December 4th. This represents a $2.80 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.17%. Anthem’s dividend payout ratio is 25.32%.

Anthem announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock repurchase plan on Thursday, December 7th that allows the company to buyback $5.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

In other Anthem news, insider Joseph Swedish sold 21,125 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $209.85, for a total value of $4,433,081.25. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 87,668 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $18,397,129.80. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, SVP Ronald W. Penczek sold 978 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $217.42, for a total transaction of $212,636.76. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 1,222 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $265,687.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 59,259 shares of company stock worth $13,194,281. 0.36% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB raised its stake in shares of Anthem by 1.9% in the third quarter. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB now owns 46,610 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,850,000 after acquiring an additional 873 shares during the last quarter. British Airways Pensions Investment Management Ltd raised its stake in shares of Anthem by 9.4% during the third quarter. British Airways Pensions Investment Management Ltd now owns 191,646 shares of the company’s stock worth $36,380,000 after buying an additional 16,403 shares during the last quarter. Farmers & Merchants Trust Co of Chambersburg PA raised its stake in shares of Anthem by 10.0% during the third quarter. Farmers & Merchants Trust Co of Chambersburg PA now owns 8,214 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,560,000 after buying an additional 750 shares during the last quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. raised its stake in shares of Anthem by 15.6% during the third quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 8,219 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,561,000 after buying an additional 1,109 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company MN raised its stake in shares of Anthem by 20.2% during the third quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 845,634 shares of the company’s stock worth $160,569,000 after buying an additional 142,007 shares during the last quarter. 87.41% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Anthem

Anthem, Inc is a health benefits company. The Company operates through three segments: Commercial and Specialty Business, Government Business and Other. It offers a spectrum of network-based managed care plans to large and small employer, individual, Medicaid and Medicare markets. Its managed care plans include preferred provider organizations; health maintenance organizations; point-of-service plans; indemnity plans and other hybrid plans, including consumer-driven health plans; and hospital only and limited benefit products.

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