Deutsche Bank initiated coverage on shares of Centene (NYSE:CNC) in a research report released on Thursday morning, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. The brokerage issued a buy rating and a $62.00 price objective on the stock.

Other equities analysts also recently issued reports about the stock. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Centene from a buy rating to a hold rating and set a $49.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Monday, September 2nd. Morgan Stanley decreased their price objective on shares of Centene from $71.00 to $64.00 and set an overweight rating on the stock in a report on Friday, August 23rd. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of Centene from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 2nd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and thirteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $73.10.

CNC traded up $0.73 during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $45.62. 4,158,056 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 4,019,593. The company has a current ratio of 1.07, a quick ratio of 1.07 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.58. The company has a market capitalization of $19.57 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.89, a PEG ratio of 0.75 and a beta of 0.85. Centene has a 52-week low of $44.50 and a 52-week high of $74.49. The business has a 50 day simple moving average of $48.36 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $53.23.

Centene (NYSE:CNC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 23rd. The company reported $1.34 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.24 by $0.10. The business had revenue of $18.36 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $18.02 billion. Centene had a net margin of 1.84% and a return on equity of 15.87%. The company’s revenue was up 29.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.90 earnings per share. Equities research analysts anticipate that Centene will post 4.42 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Centene news, Director Jessica L. Blume purchased 2,850 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 26th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $52.99 per share, with a total value of $151,021.50. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Company insiders own 2.50% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of CNC. Compagnie Lombard Odier SCmA purchased a new position in Centene during the second quarter worth about $30,000. Zions Bancorporation N.A. raised its stake in Centene by 131.5% during the first quarter. Zions Bancorporation N.A. now owns 602 shares of the company’s stock worth $32,000 after purchasing an additional 342 shares during the period. Global Retirement Partners LLC raised its stake in Centene by 568.0% during the first quarter. Global Retirement Partners LLC now owns 648 shares of the company’s stock worth $34,000 after purchasing an additional 551 shares during the period. Reilly Financial Advisors LLC raised its stake in Centene by 133.3% during the second quarter. Reilly Financial Advisors LLC now owns 700 shares of the company’s stock worth $37,000 after purchasing an additional 400 shares during the period. Finally, Berman Capital Advisors LLC raised its stake in Centene by 369.3% during the first quarter. Berman Capital Advisors LLC now owns 826 shares of the company’s stock worth $43,000 after purchasing an additional 650 shares during the period. 97.76% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Centene

Centene Corporation operates as a diversified and multi-national healthcare enterprise that provides programs and services to under-insured and uninsured individuals in the United States. The company's Managed Care segment offers health plan coverage to individuals through government subsidized programs, including Medicaid, the State children's health insurance program, long-term services and support, foster care, and medicare-medicaid plans, which covers dually eligible individuals, as well as aged, blind, or disabled programs.

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Analyst Recommendations for Centene (NYSE:CNC)

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