Avondale Partners analyst Paula Torch says investors should expect generally good second-quarter numbers from hospital operators in the coming weeks. The recent positive preview from industry leader HCA Holdings was a good tell and should generally translate to other operators. Torch expects LifePoint report earnings per share of $1.01, two cents above analysts’ consensus, on the back of good patient volumes, better cost controls and the upgrading of acquired hospitals. But she’s not as bullish on the prospects of Community Health Systems, which she expects will earn 88 cents per share, a penny less than consensus. But revenues should be strong, she says, helped by easier comparisons to last year’s Q2 and helping to offset spending on doctor recruitment at former HMA hospitals.
Marilyn Tavenner, the former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, has resigned her seat on the board of LifePoint Health. Tavenner was named a director of the Brentwood-based company only this past April, but is stepping down to focus on her new job as CEO of America's Health Insurance Plans, one of the biggest trade groups in the health care sector.
William F. Carpenter III, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of LifePoint Health, said, “On behalf of LifePoint, I want to congratulate Marilyn on her appointment as AHIP President and CEO. While this means we must lose her as a member of our Board of Directors, the healthcare industry remains very fortunate to have Marilyn as a leader during this time of change. She will play an important role in making communities healthier by providing continued leadership in the efforts to improve access to quality, affordable care for all Americans. Our board understands her need to focus on this new endeavor, and we wish her the very best.”
New York Stock Exchange officials have told Noranda Aluminum Holding executives that the slide in the company's share price to below $1 has put it in the listing standards doghouse. The Noranda team now has six months to get their stock back above $1 on a regular basis. To that end, they will host on Aug. 24 a special shareholders' vote on a 1-for-7 reverse split. Noranda shares (Ticker: NOR) rose more than 6 percent Tuesday to 56.5 cents.
Brian Martin at FIG Partners has lowered his rating on shares of Pinnacle Financial Partners to 'market perform' from 'market outperform' following the bank holding company's Q2 profit report. Before the report, Martin's price target was $53, just a bit above where Pinnacle (Ticker: PNFP) is changing hands today. Over at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, analysts have trimmed their price target for Nashville-based Pinnacle to $62 from $63 but maintained his 'buy' rating.
Macquarie analyst Vikas Dwivedi has launched coverage of several refining stocks with positive ratings, saying the sector will benefit from tight capacity and solid financials. Among the companies getting 'outperform' ratings is Brentwood-based Delek US Holdings. Mid-morning Tuesday, Delek (Ticker: DK) was trading at about $36.50. So far this year, they're up 34 percent.
Louisiana-Pacific executives have put in place plans to begin selling a number of their products in the six Middle Eastern countries that make up the Gulf Cooperation Council. The Nashville-based company is particularly focused on marketing its concrete form beams.
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