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UnitedHealth Group (UNH) Outpaces Stock Market Gains: What You Should Know

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UnitedHealth Group (UNH - Free Report) closed at $219.80 in the latest trading session, marking a +1.26% move from the prior day. This move outpaced the S&P 500's daily gain of 0.47%. Meanwhile, the Dow gained 0.95%, and the Nasdaq, a tech-heavy index, added 2.3%.

Heading into today, shares of the largest U.S. health insurer had lost 28.91% over the past month, lagging the Medical sector's loss of 21.29% and the S&P 500's loss of 28.7% in that time.

UNH will be looking to display strength as it nears its next earnings release. In that report, analysts expect UNH to post earnings of $3.62 per share. This would mark a year-over-year decline of 2.95%. Our most recent consensus estimate is calling for quarterly revenue of $64.67 billion, up 7.23% from the year-ago period.

Looking at the full year, our Zacks Consensus Estimates suggest analysts are expecting earnings of $16.47 per share and revenue of $263.11 billion. These totals would mark changes of +9% and +8.66%, respectively, from last year.

Investors should also note any recent changes to analyst estimates for UNH. These revisions help to show the ever-changing nature of near-term business trends. As such, positive estimate revisions reflect analyst optimism about the company's business and profitability.

Research indicates that these estimate revisions are directly correlated with near-term share price momentum. We developed the Zacks Rank to capitalize on this phenomenon. Our system takes these estimate changes into account and delivers a clear, actionable rating model.

Ranging from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell), the Zacks Rank system has a proven, outside-audited track record of outperformance, with #1 stocks returning an average of +25% annually since 1988. Within the past 30 days, our consensus EPS projection remained stagnant. UNH is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy).

Valuation is also important, so investors should note that UNH has a Forward P/E ratio of 13.18 right now. This represents a premium compared to its industry's average Forward P/E of 10.27.

Investors should also note that UNH has a PEG ratio of 1.03 right now. The PEG ratio is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but this metric also takes the company's expected earnings growth rate into account. The Medical - HMOs was holding an average PEG ratio of 0.69 at yesterday's closing price.

The Medical - HMOs industry is part of the Medical sector. This industry currently has a Zacks Industry Rank of 110, which puts it in the top 44% of all 250+ industries.

The Zacks Industry Rank gauges the strength of our individual industry groups by measuring the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the groups. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.

Make sure to utilize Zacks. Com to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and more, in the coming trading sessions.


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