Medifast Inc. (NYSE: MED) stock fell -13.72% on Friday to $148.05 against a previous-day closing price of $171.60. With 1.08 million shares changed hands, the volume of the stock remained heavier than its average volume of 0.13 million shares. During the session, the Personal Services company that operates in wider Consumer Cyclical sector, reached to the highest price of $152.53 whereas the lowest price it dropped to was $140.01. The 52-week range on MED shows that it touched its highest point at $295.38 and its lowest point at $154.67 during that stretch. It currently has a 1-year price target of $327.33. With its current market cap of 1.71 billion, MED has annualized dividend of $6.56 while the current yield stands at 4.43%. Beta for the stock currently stands at 1.13.
Price Performance and Earnings:
Stock performance is one of the indicators that investors use to determine whether they will profit from a stock. The price performance of MED was down-trending over the past week, with a drop of -13.20%, but this was down by -19.65% over a month. Three-month performance dropped to -22.88% while six-month performance fell -24.03%. The stock lost -48.46% in the past year, while it has lost -29.31% so far this year. A look at the trailing 12-month EPS for MED yields 14.01 with Next year EPS estimates of 19.18. For the next quarter, that number is 3.23. This implies an EPS growth rate of 60.00% for this year and 24.69% for next year. EPS is expected to grow by 20.00% annually over the next five years; however, over the past five years, the company experienced an annual growth rate of 56.20%.
Float and Shares Shorts:
At present, 11.56 million MED shares are outstanding with a float of 11.02 million shares on hand for trading. On Jul 14, 2022, short shares totaled 0.94 million, which was 8.21% higher than short shares on Jun 14, 2022. In addition to Mr. Daniel R. Chard as the firm’s Exec. Chairman & CEO, Mr. James P. Maloney CPA serves as its Chief Financial Officer.
Through their ownership of 88.98% of MED’s outstanding shares, institutional investors have majority control over the company. Other institutions hold 59.34% of MED, in contrast to 50.21% held by mutual funds. Shares owned by individuals account for 37.45%. As the largest shareholder in MED with 15.76% of the stake, BlackRock Fund Advisors holds 1,814,366 shares worth 1,814,366. A second-largest stockholder of MED, The Vanguard Group, Inc., holds 1,491,955 shares, controlling over 12.96% of the firm’s shares. Renaissance Technologies LLC is the third largest shareholder in MED, holding 771,310 shares or 6.70% stake. With a 7.05% stake in MED, the iShares Core S&P Small Cap ETF is the largest stakeholder. A total of 811,998 shares are owned by the mutual fund manager. The Vanguard Total Stock Market Index, which owns about 2.94% of MED stock, is the second-largest Mutual Fund holder. It holds 338,200 shares valued at 61.05 million. Vanguard Small Cap Index Fund holds 2.53% of the stake in MED, owning 291,128 shares worth 52.55 million.
Reading analyst opinions is an effective way to decide where to invest, and there are several opinions available for MED since 3 analysts follow the stock currently. There are 2 analysts who recommend BUY ratings, while 0 suggest SELL ratings. Of the remaining analysts, 1 believe that the stock is worth HOLDING, 0 give it an OVERWEIGHT rating, and 0 thinks that it’s UNDERWEIGHT. In the same way, a target price assigned to a stock can also reveal much about its potential. With MED analysts setting a high price target of $352.00 and a low target of $150.00, the average target price over the next 12 months is $262.33. Based on these targets, MED could surge 137.76% to reach the target high and rise by 1.32% to reach the target low. Reaching the average price target will result in a growth of 77.19% from current levels.
EPS: Estimates vs Actual
It is also common to use earnings estimates to evaluate a firm’s growth potential and to determine trading strategy. MED will report FY 2022 earnings on 03/08/2023. Analysts have provided yearly estimates in a range of $16.01 being high and $11.15 being low. For MED, this leads to a yearly average estimate of $13.94. The earnings surprise of a firm occurs when the actual results change from the consensus earnings estimate. Medifast Inc. surprised analysts by $0.64 when it reported $3.87 EPS against a consensus estimate of $3.23. The surprise factor in the prior quarter was $0.02. Based on analyst estimates, the high estimate for the next quarter is $4.52 and the low estimate is $1.79. The average estimate for the next quarter is thus $3.49.
Summary of Insider Activity:
Insiders traded MED stock several times over the past three months with 5 Buys and 0 Sells. In these transactions, 7,176 shares were bought while 0 shares were sold. The number of buy transactions has increased to 32 while that of sell transactions has risen to 12 over the past year. The total number of shares bought during that period was 168,133 while 131,021 shares were sold.