Benefitfocus (BNFT) Lifted to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Benefitfocus (NASDAQ:BNFT) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday. The firm presently has a $47.00 price target on the software maker’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target points to a potential upside of 8.42% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Benefitfocus, Inc. offers cloud-based software solutions to consumers, employers, insurance carriers and brokers. The Company’s platform of products and services enable customers to efficiently shop, enroll, manage and exchange benefits information. Benefitfocus, Inc. is based in Charleston, South Carolina. “

BNFT has been the subject of several other research reports. Raymond James boosted their price target on shares of Benefitfocus from $40.00 to $50.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, August 24th. BidaskClub lowered shares of Benefitfocus from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, September 18th. Wedbush boosted their price target on shares of Benefitfocus from $42.00 to $44.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, November 2nd. Guggenheim initiated coverage on shares of Benefitfocus in a report on Monday, August 20th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $45.00 price target for the company. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Benefitfocus from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating, eleven have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. Benefitfocus currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $40.45.

NASDAQ BNFT traded down $0.53 on Wednesday, hitting $43.35. The company had a trading volume of 1,964 shares, compared to its average volume of 294,263. The firm has a market cap of $1.33 billion, a PE ratio of -55.15 and a beta of 1.16. Benefitfocus has a 12-month low of $21.75 and a 12-month high of $45.88.

Benefitfocus (NASDAQ:BNFT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 1st. The software maker reported ($0.23) EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of ($0.28) by $0.05. The company had revenue of $61.00 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $59.91 million. Benefitfocus’s revenue was up 8.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted ($0.06) EPS. As a group, research analysts predict that Benefitfocus will post -1.18 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, Director Francis J. Pelzer sold 750 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $40.00, for a total transaction of $30,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 24,275 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $971,000. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CFO Jonathon E. Dussault sold 4,045 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.81, for a total transaction of $148,896.45. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 10,295 shares of company stock worth $409,514. 29.00% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in BNFT. Millennium Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Benefitfocus during the 1st quarter valued at about $2,049,000. Royal Bank of Canada boosted its position in shares of Benefitfocus by 13.2% during the 1st quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 36,562 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $892,000 after acquiring an additional 4,250 shares during the last quarter. Gofen & Glossberg LLC IL acquired a new position in shares of Benefitfocus during the 2nd quarter valued at about $239,000. Baillie Gifford & Co. boosted its position in shares of Benefitfocus by 88.3% during the 2nd quarter. Baillie Gifford & Co. now owns 696,164 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $23,391,000 after acquiring an additional 326,460 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Pendal Group Ltd boosted its position in shares of Benefitfocus by 6.6% during the 2nd quarter. Pendal Group Ltd now owns 61,079 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $2,052,000 after acquiring an additional 3,757 shares during the last quarter. 93.26% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Benefitfocus Company Profile

Benefitfocus, Inc provides cloud-based benefits management platform for consumers, employers, insurance carriers, and brokers in the United States. It operates through Employer and Carrier segments. The company's products for insurance carriers include Marketplaces, which are online shopping environments; eEnrollment that provides online enrollment for benefits; eBilling, an electronic invoice presentment and payment solution; eExchange, a solution for communication; eSales for carriers and brokers to organize and manage accounts, track leads, generate quotes, and create proposals for products; and Core & Advanced Analytics, a data analytics solution.

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