Wall Street brokerages expect Quest Diagnostics Inc (NYSE:DGX) to report $1.91 billion in sales for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks reports. Nine analysts have issued estimates for Quest Diagnostics’ earnings, with the highest sales estimate coming in at $1.97 billion and the lowest estimate coming in at $1.88 billion. Quest Diagnostics posted sales of $1.90 billion in the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year-over-year growth rate of 0.5%. The company is scheduled to issue its next earnings results on Thursday, April 19th.
On average, analysts expect that Quest Diagnostics will report full-year sales of $1.91 billion for the current fiscal year, with estimates ranging from $7.70 billion to $8.05 billion. For the next financial year, analysts anticipate that the firm will report sales of $8.00 billion per share, with estimates ranging from $7.83 billion to $8.25 billion. Zacks’ sales averages are an average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that follow Quest Diagnostics.
Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, February 1st. The medical research company reported $1.40 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.37 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $1.94 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.93 billion. Quest Diagnostics had a return on equity of 15.41% and a net margin of 10.00%. Quest Diagnostics’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.31 earnings per share.
A number of equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the company. Credit Suisse Group raised Quest Diagnostics from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $107.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, February 13th. Zacks Investment Research raised Quest Diagnostics from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $115.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, February 6th. Piper Jaffray Companies reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $110.00 target price on shares of Quest Diagnostics in a research report on Thursday, February 1st. Goldman Sachs Group assumed coverage on Quest Diagnostics in a research report on Monday, January 29th. They set a “buy” rating and a $117.00 target price on the stock. Finally, Mizuho set a $113.00 target price on Quest Diagnostics and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 24th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have issued a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $107.40.
In other Quest Diagnostics news, EVP J. E. Davis sold 63,880 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, January 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $98.68, for a total value of $6,303,678.40. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 101,423 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $10,008,421.64. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, Chairman Stephen H. Rusckowski sold 106,840 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, January 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $107.00, for a total value of $11,431,880.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 272,956 shares in the company, valued at $29,206,292. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders sold 192,014 shares of company stock worth $19,950,134. Insiders own 1.75% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Wagner Wealth Management LLC acquired a new position in Quest Diagnostics in the 4th quarter worth about $106,000. Fuller & Thaler Asset Management Inc. acquired a new position in Quest Diagnostics in the 4th quarter worth about $118,000. Cerebellum GP LLC acquired a new position in Quest Diagnostics in the 4th quarter worth about $128,000. Assetmark Inc. increased its position in Quest Diagnostics by 139.5% in the 4th quarter. Assetmark Inc. now owns 1,473 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $145,000 after purchasing an additional 858 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Icon Wealth Partners LLC acquired a new position in Quest Diagnostics in the 4th quarter worth about $147,000. 88.67% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Shares of Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) opened at $100.85 on Friday. The stock has a market capitalization of $13,890.27, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.34, a PEG ratio of 1.83 and a beta of 0.67. 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 52-week low of $90.10 and a 52-week high of $112.96.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, April 18th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, April 4th will be given a $0.50 dividend. This is a positive change from Quest Diagnostics’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.45. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.98%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, April 3rd. Quest Diagnostics’s dividend payout ratio is presently 32.73%.
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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).
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