Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care (NASDAQ:AMED) Downgraded to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care (NASDAQ:AMED) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Tuesday, March 20th.

According to Zacks, “Over the past three months, Amedisys has been outperforming its broader industry.  The company witnessing encouraging growth in Medicare and non-Medicare revenues at the Home Health and Hospice divisions buoys optimism. Amedisys is currently exploring opportunities in these segments. We are also upbeat about the company’s solid performance in the recently-launched Personal Care segment. A favorable demographic trend and strategic acquisitions bode well for the company.  However, escalating operating expenses and declining gross margin continue to raise concerns. Also, an intense competitive landscape and regulatory concerns continue to pose challenges in the home health and hospice industry.”

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A number of other equities analysts have also weighed in on the company. BidaskClub lowered Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 11th. Oppenheimer boosted their price objective on Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care from $68.00 to $63.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 1st. Jefferies Group set a $70.00 price objective on Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 28th. TheStreet lowered Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care from a “b” rating to a “c+” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 28th. Finally, William Blair reissued an “outperform” rating on shares of Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care in a research note on Tuesday, November 21st. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, seven have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $63.18.

Shares of AMED traded up $1.41 during trading hours on Tuesday, hitting $65.96. 125,782 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 300,101. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.15, a quick ratio of 1.45 and a current ratio of 1.45. Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care has a 12-month low of $45.60 and a 12-month high of $66.23. The stock has a market capitalization of $2,193.72, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.85, a PEG ratio of 1.23 and a beta of 0.65.

Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care (NASDAQ:AMED) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, February 27th. The health services provider reported $0.56 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.58 by ($0.02). Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care had a return on equity of 15.14% and a net margin of 1.98%. The firm had revenue of $404.24 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $394.96 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.44 earnings per share. analysts predict that Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care will post 3 earnings per share for the current year.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. American Century Companies Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care by 6.9% in the 4th quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 1,787,136 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $94,200,000 after purchasing an additional 115,456 shares during the last quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN lifted its stake in shares of Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care by 29.7% in the 3rd quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 1,484,041 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $83,048,000 after purchasing an additional 339,825 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its stake in shares of Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care by 5.3% in the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,184,424 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $66,280,000 after purchasing an additional 59,481 shares during the last quarter. Millennium Management LLC lifted its stake in shares of Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care by 58.2% in the 4th quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 1,048,423 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $55,262,000 after purchasing an additional 385,734 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its stake in shares of Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care by 10.8% in the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 846,575 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $47,375,000 after purchasing an additional 82,247 shares during the last quarter. 96.71% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Amedisys Home Health and Hospice Care

Amedisys, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides healthcare services in the United States. It operates through three segments: Home Health, Hospice, and Personal Care. The Home Health segment offers a range of services in the homes of individuals for the recovery of patients from surgery, chronic disability, or terminal illness, as well as prevents avoidable hospital readmissions through its skilled nurses, physical and speech therapists, occupational therapists, and aides for its patients to complete their important personal tasks.

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