Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (NYSE:DGX) Given Average Rating of “Hold” by Brokerages

Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (NYSE:DGXGet Rating) has been assigned a consensus recommendation of “Hold” from the thirteen analysts that are presently covering the company, Marketbeat.com reports. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and three have assigned a buy recommendation to the company. The average 1-year price target among brokerages that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $150.33.

Several equities research analysts have weighed in on DGX shares. UBS Group raised their price objective on shares of Quest Diagnostics from $139.00 to $150.00 in a research report on Sunday, April 24th. Citigroup cut shares of Quest Diagnostics from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and lowered their price objective for the company from $175.00 to $140.00 in a research report on Monday, April 4th. Bank of America lowered their price target on shares of Quest Diagnostics from $166.00 to $163.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, April 22nd. Wells Fargo & Company lifted their price target on shares of Quest Diagnostics from $145.00 to $150.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Monday, April 25th. Finally, StockNews.com cut shares of Quest Diagnostics from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Saturday, June 11th.

NYSE:DGX opened at $130.64 on Friday. Quest Diagnostics has a 52 week low of $125.33 and a 52 week high of $174.16. The company has a market capitalization of $15.33 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.70 and a beta of 1.05. The company has a 50-day moving average of $136.46 and a 200-day moving average of $142.30. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.62, a quick ratio of 1.34 and a current ratio of 1.46.

Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGXGet Rating) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 21st. The medical research company reported $3.22 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $2.91 by $0.31. Quest Diagnostics had a net margin of 17.61% and a return on equity of 27.08%. The firm had revenue of $2.61 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.64 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $3.76 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 4.0% on a year-over-year basis. Sell-side analysts forecast that Quest Diagnostics will post 9.32 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, July 20th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, July 6th will be given a dividend of $0.66 per share. This represents a $2.64 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.02%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, July 5th. Quest Diagnostics’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 17.58%.

In other Quest Diagnostics news, CEO Stephen H. Rusckowski sold 282,408 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $140.12, for a total value of $39,571,008.96. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 334,833 shares in the company, valued at $46,916,799.96. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, SVP Michael E. Prevoznik sold 50,604 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $139.97, for a total transaction of $7,083,041.88. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 39,224 shares in the company, valued at $5,490,183.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 1.70% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 4.8% during the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 14,014,030 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $1,917,961,000 after buying an additional 636,301 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. grew its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 10.1% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 12,807,624 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $1,752,852,000 after buying an additional 1,171,242 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp grew its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 2.4% during the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 6,245,719 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $1,080,572,000 after buying an additional 144,251 shares in the last quarter. Bank of America Corp DE grew its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 12.4% during the first quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 3,628,272 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $496,566,000 after buying an additional 398,924 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Victory Capital Management Inc. grew its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 13.2% during the first quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 2,887,615 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $394,397,000 after buying an additional 335,762 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 89.89% of the company’s stock.

Quest Diagnostics Company Profile (Get Rating)

Quest Diagnostics Incorporated provides diagnostic testing, information, and services in the United States and internationally. The company develops and delivers diagnostic information services, such as routine testing, non-routine and advanced clinical testing, anatomic pathology testing, and other diagnostic information services.

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