UnitedHealth Group Inc (NYSE:UNH) Short Interest Update

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UnitedHealth Group Inc (NYSE:UNH) was the recipient of a significant growth in short interest in the month of November. As of November 29th, there was short interest totalling 10,600,000 shares, a growth of 20.5% from the November 14th total of 8,800,000 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 4,140,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.6 days. Approximately 1.1% of the shares of the stock are short sold.

Several analysts have recently commented on the company. Evercore ISI assumed coverage on UnitedHealth Group in a report on Tuesday. They set a “buy” rating and a $285.00 target price on the stock. Deutsche Bank assumed coverage on UnitedHealth Group in a report on Thursday, September 12th. They set a “hold” rating and a $263.00 target price on the stock. Jefferies Financial Group cut UnitedHealth Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and decreased their target price for the stock from $300.00 to $235.00 in a report on Thursday, October 10th. Mizuho restated a “buy” rating and set a $300.00 target price (up previously from $270.00) on shares of UnitedHealth Group in a report on Tuesday, November 26th. Finally, UBS Group increased their target price on UnitedHealth Group from $257.00 to $279.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 4th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eighteen 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 $299.48.

UnitedHealth Group stock traded up $1.87 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $285.48. The stock had a trading volume of 3,490,279 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,351,559. The stock has a 50-day simple moving average of $267.04 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $247.33. The stock has a market capitalization of $265.75 billion, a PE ratio of 22.16, a P/E/G ratio of 1.48 and a beta of 0.64. UnitedHealth Group has a 12 month low of $208.07 and a 12 month high of $287.81. The company has a current ratio of 0.70, a quick ratio of 0.70 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.67.

UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 15th. The healthcare conglomerate reported $3.88 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $3.75 by $0.13. The business had revenue of $60.35 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $59.84 billion. UnitedHealth Group had a return on equity of 25.30% and a net margin of 5.57%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 6.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $3.41 earnings per share. Sell-side analysts expect that UnitedHealth Group will post 14.99 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, December 17th. Investors of record on Monday, December 9th will be issued a $1.08 dividend. This represents a $4.32 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.51%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, December 6th. UnitedHealth Group’s dividend payout ratio is 33.54%.

In other news, Director Richard T. Burke sold 2,500 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $233.40, for a total transaction of $583,500.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 187,979 shares in the company, valued at $43,874,298.60. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP D Ellen Wilson sold 7,400 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, November 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $272.77, for a total value of $2,018,498.00. Insiders sold 38,577 shares of company stock worth $9,398,080 over the last quarter. Company insiders own 0.87% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Selective Wealth Management Inc. bought a new position in UnitedHealth Group in the third quarter valued at about $27,000. North Star Investment Management Corp. acquired a new position in UnitedHealth Group in the third quarter valued at about $30,000. Delta Asset Management LLC TN lifted its stake in UnitedHealth Group by 111.0% in the third quarter. Delta Asset Management LLC TN now owns 154 shares of the healthcare conglomerate’s stock valued at $33,000 after buying an additional 81 shares during the period. Fusion Family Wealth LLC lifted its stake in UnitedHealth Group by 329.7% in the third quarter. Fusion Family Wealth LLC now owns 159 shares of the healthcare conglomerate’s stock valued at $35,000 after buying an additional 122 shares during the period. Finally, Massey Quick Simon & CO. LLC lifted its stake in UnitedHealth Group by 212.5% in the third quarter. Massey Quick Simon & CO. LLC now owns 175 shares of the healthcare conglomerate’s stock valued at $38,000 after buying an additional 119 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 85.48% of the company’s stock.

UnitedHealth Group Company Profile

UnitedHealth Group Incorporated operates as a diversified health care company in the United States. It operates through four segments: UnitedHealthcare, OptumHealth, OptumInsight, and OptumRx. The UnitedHealthcare segment offers consumer-oriented health benefit plans and services for national employers, public sector employers, mid-sized employers, small businesses, and individuals; health and well-being services to individuals age 50 and older, addressing their needs for preventive and acute health care services, as well as services dealing with chronic disease and other specialized issues for older individuals; and Medicaid plans, Children's Health Insurance Program, and health care programs; and health and dental benefits.

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