Aetna Inc. (AET) Shares Active after Upgrade at Zacks Investment Research

Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) shares fell back in value on Thursday February 2 on slower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a upgraded rating.

Meanwhile, The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.10% fell 34 points, or 0.2%, to 19,858. The S&P 500 SPX, -0.11% lost 4 points to 2,276, a drop of 0.2%. The Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, -0.05% slid 16 points, or 0.3%, to 5,626. Among the most actively traded Nasdaq stocks was Facebook Inc FB, +0.31% which fell 0.7% a day after it reported its quarterly results.

Analysts at Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) from Sell to Hold today. Zacks Investment Research currently has a rating of Hold on the shares. As a means of comparison, a number of other analysts have commented on the stock recently, and the company has secured a consensus one-year price target of $140.07, above the opening price of $121.29, a difference of 11.57 percent. Aetna Inc. stock has a 52-week high of $136.50. Usually, after analysts assign an upgrade report on a stock, they will later issue periodic revisions, such as a price target change.

Yesterday Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) shares last traded at $121.02, a dip of $0.60 compared to the previous closing price. Opening at $121.29, they fluctuated from $119.92 and $121.68 throughout the day.

Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) currently has a market cap of 42.46B.

Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) Average Daily Trading Volume

The stock’s average daily volume is 3,289,360 shares out of a total float 341,320,000 and some 428,858 shares traded hands yesterday, 80 percent below the average. lower than normal. Look for trading volume to pick up in the coming days as momentum traders often use swings in trading volume to identify heavy volume accumulation or distribution by institutional investors.

While increased trading for one day will not mean much, conversely, a trend of heavy trading volume on the buy side over a period of days or weeks sends a positive signal to market traders that institutions may be moving in, so institutional sponsorship is very important.

Institutional sponsorship is defined by ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

These instituitional investors retain substantial teams of analysts researching thousands of stocks. Thus, watching their interests is a good way to ensure you are buying the right stocks.

Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) 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 spotting trends, moving averages allow traders to make those trends work in their favor and increase the number of winning trades.

Trades for Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) have ranged from $92.42 – 136.500, and the stock now has a 50-day MA of $122.58 and 200-day MA of $118.89. Today’s last price is 11.34%% lower than the 52 week high of $136.50.

Indeed, earnings growth is among the most critical things to look at in regards to stock investing and, accordingly, investors watch for companies that have grown their earnings at least 25% or more for the past 3 years.

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