MAXIMUS (MMS) Lifted to “Buy” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of MAXIMUS (NYSE:MMS) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note issued to investors on Friday morning. They currently have $71.00 price objective on the health services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “MAXIMUS, Inc. is an extremely dynamic and complex organization that offers government and industry a range of unique services, products, and solutions. The diverse services and products that MAXIMUS offers may be categorized into three groups: Government Program Management and Operations, Consulting, and Systems. Government Program Management and Operations focuses on having a measurable impact on the lives of the citizens we help government serve. The insights of MAXIMUS Consulting, and the technological innovations advanced through Systems, help government gain program efficiencies and pursue improvements that in turn benefit citizens. “

Separately, Canaccord Genuity upped their price target on shares of MAXIMUS from $64.00 to $67.00 and gave the stock a hold rating in a report on Wednesday, October 10th.

Shares of MMS stock opened at $67.43 on Friday. MAXIMUS has a 1 year low of $60.00 and a 1 year high of $72.71. The firm has a market cap of $4.32 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.83, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.37 and a beta of 0.97.

MAXIMUS (NYSE:MMS) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, November 20th. The health services provider reported $0.71 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.72 by ($0.01). MAXIMUS had a net margin of 9.23% and a return on equity of 20.23%. The business had revenue of $558.50 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $587.58 million. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.81 EPS. The company’s revenue was down 10.0% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts forecast that MAXIMUS will post 3.66 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, November 30th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, November 15th will be issued a $0.25 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 14th. This represents a $1.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.48%. This is a boost from MAXIMUS’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.05. MAXIMUS’s dividend payout ratio is presently 29.41%.

In related news, Director Russell A. Beliveau sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $63.86, for a total value of $63,860.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, General Counsel David Francis sold 6,220 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $63.86, for a total transaction of $397,209.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 66,222 shares of company stock worth $4,307,909. Insiders own 3.10% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Bruderman Asset Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of MAXIMUS in the 2nd quarter worth about $119,000. Fort L.P. purchased a new position in shares of MAXIMUS in the 2nd quarter worth about $120,000. Violich Capital Management Inc. purchased a new position in shares of MAXIMUS in the 2nd quarter worth about $204,000. Advisors Asset Management Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of MAXIMUS by 132.3% in the 2nd quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. now owns 3,807 shares of the health services provider’s stock worth $461,000 after purchasing an additional 2,168 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Engineers Gate Manager LP purchased a new position in shares of MAXIMUS in the 3rd quarter worth about $254,000. 93.53% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About MAXIMUS

MAXIMUS, Inc provides business process services (BPS) to government health and human services programs in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Singapore, and Saudi Arabia. The company's Health Services segment offers various BPS, appeals, and assessments, as well as related consulting services for state, provincial, and national government programs comprising Medicaid, Children's Health Insurance Program, the Affordable Care Act, Health Insurance British Columbia, the Health Assessment Advisory Service, and Preadmission Screening and Resident Reviews.

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