Hexavest Inc. Reduces Stake in Universal Health Services, Inc. (UHS)

Hexavest Inc. cut its stake in Universal Health Services, Inc. (NYSE:UHS) by 4.3% during the fourth quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 441,465 shares of the health services provider’s stock after selling 19,621 shares during the quarter. Hexavest Inc.’s holdings in Universal Health Services were worth $51,457,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of UHS. FMR LLC increased its stake in shares of Universal Health Services by 16.9% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 4,123,674 shares of the health services provider’s stock worth $459,542,000 after acquiring an additional 596,965 shares during the last quarter. Korea Investment CORP increased its stake in shares of Universal Health Services by 150.5% in the second quarter. Korea Investment CORP now owns 45,108 shares of the health services provider’s stock worth $5,027,000 after acquiring an additional 27,100 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC acquired a new position in shares of Universal Health Services in the second quarter worth $31,649,000. Raymond James & Associates increased its stake in shares of Universal Health Services by 9.2% in the second quarter. Raymond James & Associates now owns 52,550 shares of the health services provider’s stock worth $5,856,000 after acquiring an additional 4,449 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Morgan Stanley increased its stake in shares of Universal Health Services by 1.3% in the second quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 315,315 shares of the health services provider’s stock worth $35,139,000 after acquiring an additional 4,165 shares during the last quarter. 89.46% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

NYSE:UHS traded up $1.39 during trading hours on Thursday, reaching $125.70. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 19,551 shares, compared to its average volume of 844,167. The company has a current ratio of 1.09, a quick ratio of 1.01 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.68. Universal Health Services, Inc. has a one year low of $109.37 and a one year high of $139.63. The stock has a market capitalization of $10.97 billion, a PE ratio of 16.60, a P/E/G ratio of 1.16 and a beta of 0.98.

Universal Health Services (NYSE:UHS) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 25th. The health services provider reported $2.23 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.01 by $0.22. Universal Health Services had a net margin of 7.89% and a return on equity of 16.33%. The company had revenue of $2.65 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.68 billion. On average, sell-side analysts forecast that Universal Health Services, Inc. will post 9.49 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Universal Health Services announced that its board has initiated a share buyback plan on Monday, December 17th that permits the company to buyback $500.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization permits the health services provider to purchase up to 4.5% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, December 17th. Shareholders of record on Monday, December 3rd were issued a dividend of $0.10 per share. This represents a $0.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.32%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, November 30th. Universal Health Services’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 5.31%.

UHS has been the topic of a number of research reports. Bank of America raised shares of Universal Health Services from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $128.00 to $155.00 in a research note on Tuesday, September 18th. Citigroup decreased their price objective on shares of Universal Health Services from $145.00 to $140.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Monday, October 29th. Barclays decreased their price objective on shares of Universal Health Services from $135.00 to $130.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a report on Monday, October 29th. Morgan Stanley decreased their price objective on shares of Universal Health Services from $134.00 to $130.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a report on Monday, October 29th. Finally, Leerink Swann decreased their price objective on shares of Universal Health Services from $140.00 to $135.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a report on Monday, October 29th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $137.31.

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Universal Health Services Profile

Universal Health Services, Inc, through its subsidiaries, owns and operates acute care hospitals, outpatient facilities, and behavioral health care facilities. The company operates through Acute Care Hospital Services, Behavioral Health Care Services, and Other segments. Its hospital offer general and specialty surgery, internal medicine, obstetrics, emergency room care, radiology, oncology, diagnostic care, coronary care, pediatric services, pharmacy services, and/or behavioral health services.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Universal Health Services (NYSE:UHS)

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