Baxter International Inc (NYSE:BAX) has been given an average recommendation of “Buy” by the nineteen analysts that are currently covering the firm, Marketbeat Ratings reports. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, nine have issued a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The average 1 year price objective among analysts that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $70.93.
BAX has been the subject of several recent research reports. Evercore ISI initiated coverage on shares of Baxter International in a report on Wednesday, January 3rd. They set an “outperform” rating and a $71.00 target price for the company. Bank of America upgraded shares of Baxter International from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, January 2nd. Raymond James Financial upgraded shares of Baxter International from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $73.00 target price for the company in a report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Baxter International from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, December 26th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded shares of Baxter International from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating in a report on Tuesday, January 2nd.
In other Baxter International news, Director Carole J. Shapazian sold 4,990 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $66.05, for a total transaction of $329,589.50. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, SVP Giuseppe Accogli sold 28,641 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, January 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $67.00, for a total transaction of $1,918,947.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.05% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in BAX. Winslow Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Baxter International in the fourth quarter worth approximately $178,651,000. HealthCor Management L.P. acquired a new stake in shares of Baxter International in the fourth quarter worth approximately $111,504,000. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Baxter International in the fourth quarter worth approximately $74,517,000. Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its position in shares of Baxter International by 217.6% in the fourth quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 1,486,913 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $96,114,000 after acquiring an additional 1,018,800 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. boosted its position in shares of Baxter International by 18.1% in the fourth quarter. Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. now owns 3,098,384 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $200,279,000 after acquiring an additional 474,520 shares during the last quarter. 85.56% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Shares of Baxter International (BAX) traded up $0.31 on Friday, hitting $67.59. 2,110,310 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 3,310,137. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38, a current ratio of 2.57 and a quick ratio of 2.05. The stock has a market cap of $36,510.00, a P/E ratio of 28.40, a PEG ratio of 1.96 and a beta of 0.81. Baxter International has a 1-year low of $51.03 and a 1-year high of $72.58.
Baxter International (NYSE:BAX) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, February 1st. The medical instruments supplier reported $0.64 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.59 by $0.05. Baxter International had a net margin of 6.79% and a return on equity of 15.11%. The firm had revenue of $2.77 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.77 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.57 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.9% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts forecast that Baxter International will post 2.78 EPS for the current fiscal year.
Baxter International announced that its board has initiated a stock buyback program on Tuesday, February 20th that permits the company to buyback $1.50 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the medical instruments supplier to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, April 2nd. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 2nd will be paid a dividend of $0.16 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 1st. This represents a $0.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.95%. Baxter International’s dividend payout ratio is currently 26.89%.
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Baxter International Company Profile
Baxter International Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides renal and hospital products. The Company operates through two segments: Hospital Products and Renal. Its Hospital Products business manufactures sterile intravenous (IV) solutions and administration sets, premixed drugs and drug-reconstitution systems, pre-filled vials and syringes for injectable drugs, IV nutrition products, parenteral nutrition therapies, infusion pumps, inhalation anesthetics and biosurgery products.
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