Fortive (NYSE:FTV) Upgraded at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Fortive (NYSE:FTV) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report issued on Wednesday, January 3rd. The firm currently has $81.00 price objective on the technology company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Fortive Corporation is currently benefiting from strength in developed markets, improved performance by Tektronix and automation businesses in North America. Ongoing margin expansion owing to the Fortive Business System, acquisitions and strong free cash flow generation are the positives. We note that acquisitions of Industrial Scientific and Landauer is anticipated to drive recurring revenues. The company’s subscription-based radiation exposure services are focused in the medical end market. However, end market cyclicality, integration issues and uncertainties in the international markets pose concerns. In the past 12 months, the stock has underperformed the industry it belongs to.”

A number of other equities analysts have also commented on FTV. Stifel Nicolaus increased their price target on Fortive from $62.00 to $72.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Friday, October 27th. Morgan Stanley reaffirmed an equal weight rating and issued a $72.00 price objective (up from $71.00) on shares of Fortive in a research note on Monday, October 2nd. ValuEngine lowered Fortive from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, November 30th. BMO Capital Markets assumed coverage on Fortive in a research note on Wednesday, November 15th. They issued an outperform rating and a $82.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Argus upgraded Fortive from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Friday, December 1st. Eight research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $71.45.

Fortive (NYSE:FTV) traded up $0.76 during trading hours on Wednesday, hitting $74.47. The company had a trading volume of 1,283,230 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,029,844. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.06, a current ratio of 1.95 and a quick ratio of 1.54. Fortive has a 12-month low of $53.36 and a 12-month high of $75.69. The stock has a market capitalization of $25,618.57, a PE ratio of 28.10, a P/E/G ratio of 2.27 and a beta of 0.44.

Fortive (NYSE:FTV) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The technology company reported $0.77 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.73 by $0.04. Fortive had a return on equity of 31.67% and a net margin of 14.39%. The company had revenue of $1.68 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.66 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.65 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 7.4% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts predict that Fortive will post 2.85 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 29th. Shareholders of record on Friday, November 24th were issued a dividend of $0.07 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, November 22nd. This represents a $0.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.38%. Fortive’s payout ratio is currently 10.57%.

In other news, SVP Stacey A. Walker sold 4,775 shares of Fortive stock in a transaction on Tuesday, October 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $72.49, for a total value of $346,139.75. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, insider James A. Lico sold 50,000 shares of Fortive stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $73.14, for a total value of $3,657,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 166,014 shares in the company, valued at $12,142,263.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 12.10% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Capital World Investors boosted its position in shares of Fortive by 37.9% in the 2nd quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 9,834,197 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $622,996,000 after purchasing an additional 2,701,496 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its position in Fortive by 11.7% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 18,488,658 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $1,171,255,000 after acquiring an additional 1,934,309 shares during the period. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lifted its position in Fortive by 261.8% during the 2nd quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 1,948,537 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $123,442,000 after acquiring an additional 1,410,000 shares during the period. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC lifted its position in Fortive by 41.2% during the 2nd quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 3,330,651 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $210,997,000 after acquiring an additional 971,997 shares during the period. Finally, APG Asset Management N.V. lifted its position in Fortive by 49.7% during the 3rd quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 2,182,268 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $154,483,000 after acquiring an additional 724,400 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 78.75% of the company’s stock.

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Fortive Company Profile

Fortive Corporation is a diversified industrial growth company. The Company designs, develops, manufactures and markets professional and engineered products, software and services for a range of end markets. The Company operates through two segments: Professional Instrumentation and Industrial Technologies.

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