Coventry Health Care The managed health care company reported last month fourth-quarter earnings of $85.7 million, or 61 cents a share, down from year-earlier earnings of $150.3 million, or $1.02. "This morning, in a somewhat unexpected move, CVH announced that it is instituting a quarterly dividend of $0.125/share, representing a dividend yield of 1.5% and a payout ratio of about 16%," Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts wrote in a March 12 report. "As a reminder, managed care companies began instituting meaningful quarterly dividends starting with UNH in May 2010, and AET, HUM, WLP and, now, CVH have since followed suit (average yield of 1.4%). We view the announcement as a positive for CVH, as the dividend puts it in line with peers on the yield front, while still leaving significant upside from M&A and share repurchase (we estimate CVH could deploy 24% of its market cap in 2012)." Forward Annual Dividend Yield: 1.5% Rated "B (Buy)" by TheStreet Ratings: The company's fourth-quarter gross profit margin decreased from the previous year. Coventry Health Care has average liquidity. Its Quick Ratio is 1.14, which shows the company can technically meet its short-term cash needs. In the fourth quarter, stockholders' net worth increased 7.42% from the prior year. TheStreet Ratings' price target is $41.32. The stock closed Monday at $33.72 and has risen 11.03% year to date.