Neutral Media Coverage Likely to Affect Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) Stock Price

News stories about Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) have been trending neutral this week, InfoTrie reports. The research firm rates the sentiment of news coverage by monitoring more than 6,000 news and blog sources in real-time. The firm ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of -5 to 5, with scores nearest to five being the most favorable. Johnson & Johnson earned a media sentiment score of 0.50 on their scale. InfoTrie also assigned media stories about the company an news buzz score of 7 out of 10, indicating that recent news coverage is likely to have an impact on the company’s share price in the next several days.

Here are some of the media headlines that may have effected Johnson & Johnson’s analysis:

A number of equities analysts recently issued reports on JNJ shares. Citigroup upped their price objective on shares of Johnson & Johnson from $137.00 to $148.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Monday, October 22nd. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Johnson & Johnson from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, November 16th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Johnson & Johnson from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 13th. Finally, Morgan Stanley set a $140.00 price objective on shares of Johnson & Johnson and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 20th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $142.20.

Shares of NYSE JNJ opened at $136.38 on Friday. The company has a quick ratio of 1.40, a current ratio of 1.72 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.46. Johnson & Johnson has a 52-week low of $118.62 and a 52-week high of $148.99. The company has a market capitalization of $360.72 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.67, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.15 and a beta of 0.68.

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, January 22nd. The company reported $1.97 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.95 by $0.02. Johnson & Johnson had a net margin of 18.75% and a return on equity of 35.09%. The firm had revenue of $20.39 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $20.27 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $1.74 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 1.0% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, research analysts expect that Johnson & Johnson will post 8.57 earnings per share for the current year.

Johnson & Johnson declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback plan on Monday, December 17th that allows the company to repurchase $5.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to purchase up to 1.5% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are often an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, March 12th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, February 26th will be given a $0.90 dividend. This represents a $3.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.64%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, February 25th. Johnson & Johnson’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 44.01%.

In other Johnson & Johnson news, EVP Michael E. Sneed sold 30,943 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $142.46, for a total value of $4,408,139.78. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 70,817 shares in the company, valued at approximately $10,088,589.82. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, VP Peter Fasolo sold 166,695 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, December 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $146.41, for a total transaction of $24,405,814.95. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 155,540 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $22,772,611.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 201,281 shares of company stock valued at $29,350,605. Corporate insiders own 0.22% of the company’s stock.

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Johnson & Johnson Company Profile

Johnson & Johnson, together with its subsidiaries, researches and develops, manufactures, and sells various products in the health care field worldwide. Its Consumer segment offers baby care products under the JOHNSON'S brand; oral care products under the LISTERINE brand; beauty products under the AVEENO, CLEAN & CLEAR, DABAO, JOHNSON'S Adult, LE PETITE MARSEILLAIS, NEUTROGENA, RoC, and OGX brands; over-the-counter medicines, including acetaminophen products under the TYLENOL brand; cold, flu, and allergy products under the SUDAFED brand; allergy products under the BENADRYL and ZYRTEC brands; ibuprofen products under the MOTRIN IB brand; and acid reflux products under the PEPCID brand.

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