Short Interest in Cigna Co. (NYSE:CI) Drops By 15.3%

Cigna Co. (NYSE:CIGet Rating) was the target of a large decline in short interest in the month of May. As of May 31st, there was short interest totalling 2,540,000 shares, a decline of 15.3% from the May 15th total of 3,000,000 shares. Currently, 0.8% of the company’s shares are short sold. Based on an average trading volume of 1,580,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 1.6 days.

NYSE CI traded down $3.62 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $244.68. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 132,083 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,661,932. Cigna has a 52-week low of $191.74 and a 52-week high of $273.58. The stock’s fifty day simple moving average is $258.53 and its two-hundred day simple moving average is $240.10. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.67, a current ratio of 0.70 and a quick ratio of 0.70. The firm has a market capitalization of $77.63 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.06, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.98 and a beta of 0.77.

Cigna (NYSE:CIGet Rating) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Friday, May 6th. The health services provider reported $6.01 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $5.13 by $0.88. The company had revenue of $44.01 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $43.48 billion. Cigna had a net margin of 3.04% and a return on equity of 15.31%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 7.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $4.73 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts forecast that Cigna will post 22.71 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 23rd. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, June 8th will be paid a dividend of $1.12 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, June 7th. This represents a $4.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.83%. Cigna’s dividend payout ratio is currently 27.79%.

In related news, EVP Nicole S. Jones sold 5,918 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, April 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $265.00, for a total transaction of $1,568,270.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 36,045 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $9,551,925. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, EVP Nicole S. Jones sold 12,070 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $259.03, for a total transaction of $3,126,492.10. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 35,201 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $9,118,115.03. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 132,372 shares of company stock worth $35,194,868 over the last three months. Insiders own 0.80% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Country Trust Bank increased its stake in shares of Cigna by 116.7% in the first quarter. Country Trust Bank now owns 104 shares of the health services provider’s stock worth $25,000 after buying an additional 56 shares during the last quarter. Missouri Trust & Investment Co bought a new stake in shares of Cigna in the fourth quarter worth $28,000. Wagner Wealth Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Cigna by 144.4% in the fourth quarter. Wagner Wealth Management LLC now owns 132 shares of the health services provider’s stock worth $30,000 after buying an additional 78 shares during the last quarter. Exane Derivatives increased its stake in shares of Cigna by 6,200.0% in the first quarter. Exane Derivatives now owns 126 shares of the health services provider’s stock worth $30,000 after buying an additional 124 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Lloyd Advisory Services LLC. bought a new stake in shares of Cigna in the first quarter worth $30,000. Institutional investors own 88.57% of the company’s stock.

A number of brokerages recently weighed in on CI. Cowen upgraded shares of Cigna from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and increased their price target for the stock from $242.00 to $329.00 in a research note on Monday, May 9th. Raymond James increased their price target on shares of Cigna from $275.00 to $300.00 in a research note on Tuesday, May 10th. Royal Bank of Canada upped their price objective on shares of Cigna from $235.00 to $272.00 in a research report on Monday, May 9th. Bank of America upgraded shares of Cigna from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and upped their price objective for the stock from $265.00 to $300.00 in a research report on Thursday, May 26th. Finally, SVB Leerink upped their price objective on shares of Cigna from $224.00 to $245.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Tuesday, February 22nd. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, seventeen have assigned a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, Cigna currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $288.60.

About Cigna (Get Rating)

Cigna Corporation provides insurance and related products and services in the United States. Its Evernorth segment provides a range of coordinated and point solution health services, including pharmacy, benefits management, care delivery and management, and intelligence solutions to health plans, employers, government organizations, and health care providers.

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