Equities analysts forecast that Quest Diagnostics Inc (NYSE:DGX) will post earnings per share of $1.54 for the current fiscal quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Nine analysts have provided estimates for Quest Diagnostics’ earnings, with the highest EPS estimate coming in at $1.69 and the lowest estimate coming in at $1.41. Quest Diagnostics posted earnings of $1.33 per share in the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year over year growth rate of 15.8%. The firm is scheduled to issue its next quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 19th.
According to Zacks, analysts expect that Quest Diagnostics will report full-year earnings of $6.51 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.64 to $6.65. For the next year, analysts forecast that the business will report earnings of $6.83 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $6.46 to $7.12. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of sell-side analysts that that provide coverage for Quest Diagnostics.
Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 1st. The medical research company reported $1.40 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.37 by $0.03. Quest Diagnostics had a return on equity of 15.41% and a net margin of 10.00%. The firm had revenue of $1.94 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.93 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.31 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up 4.0% on a year-over-year basis.
DGX has been the topic of a number of recent analyst reports. Canaccord Genuity raised their target price on Quest Diagnostics from $100.00 to $105.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, October 26th. KeyCorp restated a “hold” rating on shares of Quest Diagnostics in a report on Friday, October 27th. Zacks Investment Research cut Quest Diagnostics from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, October 27th. Jefferies Group set a $98.00 target price on Quest Diagnostics and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, November 25th. Finally, Evercore ISI initiated coverage on Quest Diagnostics in a report on Thursday, January 4th. They set an “in-line” rating and a $103.00 target price on the stock. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have given a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company. Quest Diagnostics currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $107.40.
Quest Diagnostics (DGX) opened at $102.26 on Wednesday. The company has a current ratio of 1.24, a quick ratio of 1.15 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.76. Quest Diagnostics has a 1-year low of $90.10 and a 1-year high of $112.96. The stock has a market capitalization of $14,247.38, a PE ratio of 18.59, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.88 and a beta of 0.67.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, April 18th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, April 4th will be issued a dividend of $0.50 per share. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.96%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, April 3rd. This is a boost from Quest Diagnostics’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.45. Quest Diagnostics’s payout ratio is 32.73%.
In other news, EVP J. E. Davis sold 63,880 shares of Quest Diagnostics stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, January 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $98.68, for a total transaction of $6,303,678.40. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 101,423 shares in the company, valued at approximately $10,008,421.64. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, SVP Catherine T. Doherty sold 21,294 shares of Quest Diagnostics stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, January 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $104.00, for a total value of $2,214,576.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 90,709 shares in the company, valued at approximately $9,433,736. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 192,014 shares of company stock worth $19,950,134 in the last quarter. 1.75% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.
A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. APG Asset Management N.V. lifted its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 156.0% in the 3rd quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 2,683,901 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $251,320,000 after acquiring an additional 1,635,700 shares in the last quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. lifted its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 29.1% in the 4th quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 2,487,295 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $244,974,000 after acquiring an additional 560,538 shares in the last quarter. Allianz Asset Management GmbH lifted its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 5.6% in the 4th quarter. Allianz Asset Management GmbH now owns 2,148,357 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $211,592,000 after acquiring an additional 114,861 shares in the last quarter. Bessemer Group Inc. lifted its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 73.1% in the 4th quarter. Bessemer Group Inc. now owns 2,107,796 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $207,596,000 after acquiring an additional 889,802 shares in the last quarter. Finally, American Century Companies Inc. lifted its stake in Quest Diagnostics by 16.8% in the 4th quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 2,039,110 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $200,832,000 after acquiring an additional 293,611 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 88.67% of the company’s stock.
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Quest Diagnostics Company Profile
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).
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