HCA Healthcare (NYSE:HCA) Upgraded at StockNews.com

StockNews.com upgraded shares of HCA Healthcare (NYSE:HCAFree Report) from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note released on Wednesday morning.

HCA has been the subject of several other research reports. Cantor Fitzgerald reissued an overweight rating and issued a $315.00 target price on shares of HCA Healthcare in a research note on Friday, January 19th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered their target price on shares of HCA Healthcare from $313.00 to $265.00 and set a neutral rating for the company in a research note on Friday, November 17th. TheStreet cut HCA Healthcare from a b- rating to a c+ rating in a report on Wednesday, October 25th. Citigroup decreased their price target on HCA Healthcare from $324.00 to $279.00 and set a buy rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, October 25th. Finally, Truist Financial increased their price objective on shares of HCA Healthcare from $320.00 to $345.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Wednesday, January 31st. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, ten have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. According to MarketBeat, HCA Healthcare has a consensus rating of Moderate Buy and a consensus price target of $304.26.

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HCA Healthcare Stock Up 0.3 %

HCA Healthcare stock opened at $306.32 on Wednesday. HCA Healthcare has a fifty-two week low of $215.96 and a fifty-two week high of $314.82. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 35.07, a quick ratio of 1.02 and a current ratio of 1.18. The stock’s fifty day moving average is $279.39 and its two-hundred day moving average is $263.14. The firm has a market capitalization of $81.99 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.14, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.54 and a beta of 1.65.

HCA Healthcare (NYSE:HCAGet Free Report) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, January 30th. The company reported $5.90 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $5.05 by $0.85. The business had revenue of $17.30 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $16.51 billion. HCA Healthcare had a net margin of 8.07% and a return on equity of 996.30%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 11.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $4.64 earnings per share. Analysts predict that HCA Healthcare will post 20.48 EPS for the current fiscal year.

HCA Healthcare Increases Dividend

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 29th. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 15th will be issued a $0.66 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 14th. This represents a $2.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.86%. This is a positive change from HCA Healthcare’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.60. HCA Healthcare’s payout ratio is currently 12.64%.

HCA Healthcare announced that its board has initiated a stock repurchase program on Tuesday, January 30th that allows the company to buyback $6.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the company to repurchase up to 7.4% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are generally a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

Insider Activity

In other HCA Healthcare news, SVP Chad J. Wasserman sold 652 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, February 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $312.04, for a total transaction of $203,450.08. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 290 shares in the company, valued at approximately $90,491.60. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. In related news, SVP Kathryn A. Torres sold 3,861 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $307.00, for a total value of $1,185,327.00. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 15,899 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,880,993. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, SVP Chad J. Wasserman sold 652 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, February 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $312.04, for a total value of $203,450.08. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 290 shares in the company, valued at $90,491.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 9,358 shares of company stock worth $2,883,745. 1.60% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Institutional Trading of HCA Healthcare

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. BlackRock Inc. lifted its holdings in HCA Healthcare by 1.5% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 14,898,753 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,521,474,000 after purchasing an additional 213,172 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its holdings in HCA Healthcare by 1.7% during the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 8,975,423 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,723,861,000 after purchasing an additional 149,750 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its position in shares of HCA Healthcare by 1.7% during the 1st quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 3,812,961 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,002,773,000 after purchasing an additional 64,029 shares during the period. Royal Bank of Canada boosted its stake in HCA Healthcare by 102.0% during the second quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 3,650,988 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,108,001,000 after buying an additional 1,843,887 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership lifted its holdings in HCA Healthcare by 14.1% in the 1st quarter. Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership now owns 2,800,847 shares of the company’s stock valued at $701,948,000 after acquiring an additional 347,177 shares during the last quarter. 62.73% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About HCA Healthcare

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HCA Healthcare, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides health care services in the United States. It operates general and acute care hospitals that offers medical and surgical services, including inpatient care, intensive care, cardiac care, diagnostic, and emergency services; and outpatient services, such as outpatient surgery, laboratory, radiology, respiratory therapy, cardiology, and physical therapy.

Further Reading

Analyst Recommendations for HCA Healthcare (NYSE:HCA)

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