The Ensign Group, Inc. (ENSG) Sees Significant Decrease in Short Interest

The Ensign Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:ENSG) saw a significant drop in short interest in the month of February. As of February 28th, there was short interest totalling 964,898 shares, a drop of 24.0% from the February 15th total of 1,270,114 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 400,164 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 2.4 days. Approximately 1.9% of the company’s stock are short sold.

ENSG stock opened at $50.47 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.39, a current ratio of 1.29 and a quick ratio of 1.29. The Ensign Group has a 1-year low of $25.80 and a 1-year high of $54.56. The firm has a market cap of $2.67 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.20, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.61 and a beta of 0.98.

The Ensign Group (NASDAQ:ENSG) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, February 6th. The company reported $0.52 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.47 by $0.05. The Ensign Group had a net margin of 4.51% and a return on equity of 17.19%. The firm had revenue of $544.85 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $523.15 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.40 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 11.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts predict that The Ensign Group will post 2.06 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

ENSG has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. BidaskClub upgraded shares of The Ensign Group from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 20th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of The Ensign Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 2nd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The Ensign Group presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $40.71.

In related news, CFO Suzanne D. Snapper sold 19,191 shares of The Ensign Group stock in a transaction on Friday, February 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.58, for a total value of $913,107.78. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 228,505 shares in the company, valued at $10,872,267.90. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, CFO Suzanne D. Snapper sold 9,296 shares of The Ensign Group stock in a transaction on Thursday, January 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $41.54, for a total transaction of $386,155.84. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 201,141 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $8,355,397.14. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 6.00% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. American Century Companies Inc. increased its stake in The Ensign Group by 64.8% during the fourth quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 430,707 shares of the company’s stock valued at $16,707,000 after purchasing an additional 169,338 shares during the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its stake in The Ensign Group by 11.2% during the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 572,857 shares of the company’s stock valued at $22,220,000 after purchasing an additional 57,822 shares during the last quarter. Norges Bank bought a new stake in The Ensign Group during the fourth quarter valued at $26,625,000. FMR LLC increased its stake in The Ensign Group by 65.5% during the fourth quarter. FMR LLC now owns 768 shares of the company’s stock valued at $30,000 after purchasing an additional 304 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Psagot Investment House Ltd. increased its stake in The Ensign Group by 113.3% during the fourth quarter. Psagot Investment House Ltd. now owns 32,000 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,241,000 after purchasing an additional 17,000 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 82.37% of the company’s stock.

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The Ensign Group Company Profile

The Ensign Group, Inc provides health care services in the post-acute care continuum and other ancillary businesses. The company operates in three segments: Transitional and Skilled Services; Assisted and Independent Living Services; and Home Health and Hospice Services. The Transitional and Skilled Services segment offers a range of medical, nursing, rehabilitative, and pharmacy services, as well as routine services, such as daily dietary, social, and recreational services to Medicaid, private pay, managed care, and Medicare payors.

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