Aetna (AET) is expected to report Q1 earnings on Thursday, April 28 before the market open with a conference call scheduled for 8:30am ET.
Analysts are looking for EPS of 97c on revenue of $8.38B. The consensus range is 83c-$1.10 for EPS, and $8.29B-$8.45B for revenue, according to First Call. Aetna may have indicated an improving landscape when the health insurer raised its dividend to 15c from 1c a share in early February. Moreover, Aetna'a Q1 results may have benefited from the company's pricing discipline and cost control initiatives. A negative catalyst for the quarter may come from increased medical costs as a result of health care reform's MLR floors.
On March 7, Bernstein raised its Aetna price target to $47 from $44 following the company's Investor Day citing company guidance, firm pricing, and management's vision for winning future business. Shares remain Outperform rated. On March 25, Leerink upgraded Aetna to Outperform from Market Perform citing an attractive risk/reward following the mid-March pullback in shares. The firm has a target range for shares to $45-$49.