WellCare Health Plans, Inc. (NYSE:WCG) was the target of some unusual options trading on Wednesday. Investors purchased 4,550 put options on the stock. This is an increase of approximately 1,987% compared to the average volume of 218 put options.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of WCG. Commonwealth Equity Services LLC lifted its stake in shares of WellCare Health Plans by 52.8% in the 3rd quarter. Commonwealth Equity Services LLC now owns 2,574 shares of the company’s stock valued at $824,000 after purchasing an additional 889 shares during the period. LSV Asset Management purchased a new position in shares of WellCare Health Plans in the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $376,000. MML Investors Services LLC purchased a new position in WellCare Health Plans during the third quarter valued at $641,000. Swiss National Bank raised its stake in WellCare Health Plans by 10.6% during the third quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 85,600 shares of the company’s stock valued at $27,434,000 after buying an additional 8,200 shares during the last quarter. Finally, AXA purchased a new position in WellCare Health Plans during the third quarter valued at $3,461,000. Institutional investors own 98.49% of the company’s stock.

Several brokerages have issued reports on WCG. ValuEngine raised WellCare Health Plans from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, January 24th. Zacks Investment Research lowered WellCare Health Plans from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, December 13th. Stephens began coverage on WellCare Health Plans in a report on Monday, January 14th. They set an “overweight” rating and a $276.00 price objective for the company. Wolfe Research upgraded WellCare Health Plans from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Thursday, January 3rd. Finally, BMO Capital Markets increased their price objective on WellCare Health Plans to $330.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 6th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. WellCare Health Plans currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $306.43.

Shares of WCG opened at $259.81 on Thursday. WellCare Health Plans has a 12 month low of $188.32 and a 12 month high of $324.99. The company has a quick ratio of 1.36, a current ratio of 1.36 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.50. The firm has a market cap of $12.04 billion, a PE ratio of 23.55, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.12 and a beta of 1.23.

WellCare Health Plans (NYSE:WCG) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, February 5th. The company reported $1.63 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.55 by $0.08. The company had revenue of $5.94 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.85 billion. WellCare Health Plans had a return on equity of 15.39% and a net margin of 2.15%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 37.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.32 EPS. Analysts forecast that WellCare Health Plans will post 13.59 earnings per share for the current year.

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About WellCare Health Plans

WellCare Health Plans, Inc provides government-sponsored managed care services. The company operates in three segments: Medicaid Health Plans, Medicare Health Plans, and Medicare Prescription Drug Plans (PDPs). The Medicaid Health Plans segment offers plans for beneficiaries of temporary assistance for needy families, supplemental security income, and aged blind and disabled residents; and other state-based programs, such as children's health insurance programs and long-term services and supports programs for qualifying families who are not eligible for Medicaid.

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