Chemed Co. (NYSE:CHE) was the target of a large growth in short interest in August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 244,100 shares, a growth of 30.7% from the July 31st total of 186,800 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 111,600 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.2 days. Approximately 1.6% of the company’s shares are short sold.

Shares of CHE traded down $2.07 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $421.73. The stock had a trading volume of 121,400 shares, compared to its average volume of 120,547. The company has a market cap of $6.77 billion, a PE ratio of 35.35, a PEG ratio of 2.90 and a beta of 1.13. The company’s fifty day simple moving average is $420.22 and its two-hundred day simple moving average is $358.49. The company has a quick ratio of 0.78, a current ratio of 0.81 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.25. Chemed has a fifty-two week low of $260.03 and a fifty-two week high of $441.79.

Chemed (NYSE:CHE) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 25th. The company reported $3.36 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $3.09 by $0.27. The company had revenue of $473.60 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $471.72 million. Chemed had a return on equity of 35.63% and a net margin of 10.94%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 7.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $2.81 EPS. Equities analysts expect that Chemed will post 13.54 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, September 3rd. Stockholders of record on Monday, August 12th were given a dividend of $0.32 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, August 9th. This is a positive change from Chemed’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.30. This represents a $1.28 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.30%. Chemed’s payout ratio is 10.73%.

Several research analysts have recently weighed in on CHE shares. Oppenheimer boosted their price target on shares of Chemed from $400.00 to $430.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 1st. ValuEngine upgraded Chemed from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 7th. Bank of America raised their target price on Chemed from $470.00 to $500.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, September 6th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada raised their target price on Chemed to $405.00 and gave the company a “sector perform” rating in a report on Monday, July 29th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has given a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $411.25.

In other news, Director Donald E. Saunders sold 400 shares of Chemed stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $432.87, for a total transaction of $173,148.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 7,408 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,206,700.96. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, VP Michael D. Witzeman sold 4,349 shares of Chemed stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $432.50, for a total transaction of $1,880,942.50. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 5,175 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,238,187.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 46,812 shares of company stock worth $20,005,507 over the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 3.96% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan increased its position in shares of Chemed by 1.0% in the second quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan now owns 2,950 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,064,000 after acquiring an additional 30 shares during the last quarter. Hollencrest Capital Management boosted its holdings in Chemed by 5.9% in the 1st quarter. Hollencrest Capital Management now owns 768 shares of the company’s stock valued at $246,000 after purchasing an additional 43 shares during the period. Advisory Services Network LLC boosted its holdings in Chemed by 117.9% in the 2nd quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 85 shares of the company’s stock valued at $30,000 after purchasing an additional 46 shares during the period. Quadrant Capital Group LLC boosted its holdings in Chemed by 184.8% in the 1st quarter. Quadrant Capital Group LLC now owns 94 shares of the company’s stock valued at $26,000 after purchasing an additional 61 shares during the period. Finally, Bbva USA Bancshares Inc. boosted its holdings in Chemed by 2.4% in the 2nd quarter. Bbva USA Bancshares Inc. now owns 2,579 shares of the company’s stock valued at $931,000 after purchasing an additional 61 shares during the period. 87.16% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Chemed Company Profile

Chemed Corporation provides hospice and palliative care services to patients through a network of physicians, registered nurses, home health aides, social workers, clergy, and volunteers in the United States. It operates through two segments, VITAS and Roto-Rooter. The company also offers plumbing, drain cleaning, water restoration, and other related services to residential and commercial customers through company-owned and independent contractors, and franchised locations.

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