Benefitfocus (NASDAQ:BNFT) Upgraded to “Sell” at BidaskClub

Benefitfocus (NASDAQ:BNFT) was upgraded by equities researchers at BidaskClub from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday, BidAskClub reports.

Several other research firms also recently issued reports on BNFT. Jefferies Financial Group downgraded shares of Benefitfocus from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and upped their price objective for the company from $48.00 to $55.00 in a report on Wednesday, February 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Benefitfocus from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, May 27th. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Benefitfocus from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, May 3rd. Royal Bank of Canada cut their price target on shares of Benefitfocus to $49.00 and set a “sector perform” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, May 1st. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co cut their price target on shares of Benefitfocus from $60.00 to $55.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, May 2nd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $53.73.

BNFT opened at $26.00 on Tuesday. Benefitfocus has a 52-week low of $25.59 and a 52-week high of $60.66. The stock has a market cap of $860.43 million, a PE ratio of -17.45 and a beta of 1.51.

Benefitfocus (NASDAQ:BNFT) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 1st. The software maker reported ($0.21) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.20) by ($0.01). The firm had revenue of $68.30 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $67.77 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted ($0.26) EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 9.5% on a year-over-year basis. Sell-side analysts forecast that Benefitfocus will post -1.6 EPS for the current year.

In related news, insider James P. Restivo sold 8,646 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.51, for a total value of $410,771.46. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 65,660 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,119,506.60. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, CFO Jonathon E. Dussault sold 7,044 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.76, for a total transaction of $336,421.44. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 74,176 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,542,645.76. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 504,401 shares of company stock worth $23,617,030. 29.00% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in Benefitfocus by 33.2% in the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,272,385 shares of the software maker’s stock worth $112,527,000 after purchasing an additional 565,810 shares in the last quarter. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC lifted its position in shares of Benefitfocus by 41.9% during the 1st quarter. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC now owns 1,637,000 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $81,064,000 after buying an additional 483,700 shares in the last quarter. Artisan Partners Limited Partnership lifted its position in shares of Benefitfocus by 0.7% during the 1st quarter. Artisan Partners Limited Partnership now owns 1,217,140 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $60,273,000 after buying an additional 8,832 shares in the last quarter. Baillie Gifford & Co. lifted its position in shares of Benefitfocus by 4.0% during the 1st quarter. Baillie Gifford & Co. now owns 863,179 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $42,745,000 after buying an additional 33,000 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Wellington Management Group LLP lifted its position in shares of Benefitfocus by 29.0% during the 1st quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 540,910 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $26,785,000 after buying an additional 121,736 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 98.59% of the company’s stock.

About Benefitfocus

Benefitfocus, Inc provides cloud-based benefits management platform for consumers, employers, insurance carriers, suppliers, and brokers in the United States. The company operates through Employer and Carrier segments. Its products for insurance carriers include BenefitsPlace, a transaction-oriented, marketplace solution; eEnrollment that provides online enrollment for benefits; eBilling, an electronic invoice presentment and payment solution; eExchange, a solution that bridges the integration gap between carrier and employer systems; eSales for carriers and brokers tools to organize and manage accounts, track leads, generate quotes, and create proposals for various products; and Core & Advanced Analytics, a data analytics solution.

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Analyst Recommendations for Benefitfocus (NASDAQ:BNFT)

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