Centene Corporation (CNC) stock moves up, “Buy” rating reaffirmed by Barclays PLC Analysts

Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) shares rose in early trading today on lower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock and reiterated thier respective ratings.

Meanwhile, U.S. stocks edged lower Monday, with major indexes retreating from record levels.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.31% fell 48 points, or 0.2%, to 19,916, while the S&P 500 index SPX, -0.29% lost 5 points to 2,272, a drop of 0.2%. The Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, -0.03% rose 4 points to 5,529, a gain of about 0.1%.

Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) had its Buy rating reiterated by equities researchers at Barclays PLC in a research note to investors. With a rating of Buy on the shares, Centene Corporation has a 52-week high of $75.57. A number of other analysts have issued reports on the stock in recent days, and the company has earned a consensus one-year price target of $73.18, higher than the opening price of $60.85, a difference of 11.94 percent. Share prices often trend to the upside on recommendations and new price targets of professional analysts.

Yesterday Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) shares last traded at $61.30, a spike of $0.26 compared to the previous closing price. Opening at $60.85, they ranged from $60.85 and $61.35 throughout the day.

Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) now has a market cap of 10.48B.

Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) Average Daily Trading Volume

The stock’s average daily volume is 1,981,300 shares out of a total float 165,505,000 and some 106,829 shares traded hands yesterday, 65 percent lower than the norm. lower than normal. Look for trading volume to pick up in the coming days as momentum traders often use upticks in trading volume to identify heavy volume accumulation or distribution by institutional investors.

However, a single day of heavy buy side trading is not enough to assert a trend. As such, market traders will continue to watch for institutional sponsorship as a signal that financial institutions are moving forward.

Institutional sponsorship simply refers to ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

Institutional investors such as these have substantial teams of analysts researching thousands of stocks, so it is good corroboration to see them buying a stock you are researching.

Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) Moving Averages

A moving average can also act as support or resistance. In an uptrend a 50-day, 100-day or 200-day moving average may act as a support level, as shown in the figure below.

This is because the average acts like a floor (support), so the price bounces up off of it.

In a downtrend a moving average may act as resistance; like a ceiling, the price hits it and then starts to drop again.

By tracking the activity of these professional investors—and the moving averages they affect—it allows for traders to make more effective decisions on trades.

Trades for Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) have ranged from $47.36 – 75.57, and the stock now has a 50-day MA of $57.41 and 200-day MA of $64.45. Today’s last price is 18.88%% below the 52 week high of $75.57.

Earnings growth is a critical factor to look at when investing in stocks and investors look for companies that have been successful at growing their earnings by at least 25% over the past 3 years.

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