Quest Diagnostics (DGX) Getting Somewhat Favorable Press Coverage, Study Finds

Media headlines about Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) have trended somewhat positive this week, according to Accern. Accern ranks the sentiment of news coverage by analyzing more than 20 million news and blog sources in real-time. Accern ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores closest to one being the most favorable. Quest Diagnostics earned a coverage optimism score of 0.19 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned news headlines about the medical research company an impact score of 45.7334319830799 out of 100, indicating that recent news coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the stock’s share price in the near term.

Shares of Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) traded up $0.61 during trading on Monday, hitting $101.63. 588,100 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,130,000. The company has a current ratio of 1.47, a quick ratio of 1.37 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.78. Quest Diagnostics has a 12-month low of $90.10 and a 12-month high of $112.96. The stock has a market capitalization of $13,850.00, a PE ratio of 21.17, a PEG ratio of 2.01 and a beta of 0.60.

Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The medical research company reported $1.39 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.35 by $0.04. Quest Diagnostics had a net margin of 8.82% and a return on equity of 15.53%. The firm had revenue of $1.93 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.92 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.37 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 2.4% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts predict that Quest Diagnostics will post 5.65 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, January 24th. Investors of record on Tuesday, January 9th will be issued a dividend of $0.45 per share. The ex-dividend date is Monday, January 8th. This represents a $1.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.77%. Quest Diagnostics’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 37.50%.

A number of equities analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. Craig Hallum reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $100.00 price objective (down from $110.00) on shares of Quest Diagnostics in a research note on Tuesday, October 17th. Mizuho set a $103.00 target price on shares of Quest Diagnostics and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 19th. SunTrust Banks set a $105.00 target price on shares of Quest Diagnostics and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Sunday, October 15th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Quest Diagnostics from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 3rd. Finally, Jefferies Group set a $98.00 target price on shares of Quest Diagnostics and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Saturday, November 25th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $106.20.

In related news, EVP J. E. Davis sold 63,880 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, January 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $98.68, for a total transaction of $6,303,678.40. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 101,423 shares in the company, valued at $10,008,421.64. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. 1.75% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

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About Quest Diagnostics

Quest Diagnostics Incorporated is a provider of diagnostic information services. The Company operates through two businesses: Diagnostic Information Services and Diagnostic Solutions. The Diagnostic Information Services business develops and delivers diagnostic testing information and services, providing insights that empower and enable a range of customers, including patients, clinicians, hospitals, integrated delivery networks (IDNs), health plans, employers and accountable care organizations (ACOs).

Insider Buying and Selling by Quarter for Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX)

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