Shares of Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (NYSE:DGX) have been assigned an average rating of “Hold” from the twenty-two ratings firms that are presently covering the company, Marketbeat.com reports. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have assigned a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company. The average 1-year price objective among brokerages that have covered the stock in the last year is $105.53.

Several equities analysts have weighed in on DGX shares. Wells Fargo & Company started coverage on shares of Quest Diagnostics in a research report on Thursday, October 12th. They set a “market perform” rating and a $88.00 price objective on the stock. Raymond James Financial, Inc. reiterated a “market perform” rating on shares of Quest Diagnostics in a research report on Monday, September 25th. BidaskClub cut shares of Quest Diagnostics from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, July 24th. Bank of America Corporation upgraded shares of Quest Diagnostics from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price objective for the stock from $111.00 to $118.00 in a research report on Tuesday, July 25th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) cut shares of Quest Diagnostics from a “conviction-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and lowered their price objective for the stock from $121.00 to $113.00 in a research report on Tuesday, October 10th.

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In related news, Chairman Stephen H. Rusckowski sold 59,235 shares of Quest Diagnostics stock in a transaction on Tuesday, September 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $108.16, for a total value of $6,406,857.60. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now owns 220,049 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $23,800,499.84. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Daniel Stanzione sold 3,803 shares of Quest Diagnostics stock in a transaction on Tuesday, September 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $108.01, for a total transaction of $410,762.03. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 35,359 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,819,125.59. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 161,996 shares of company stock valued at $17,517,207. 1.75% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. WFG Advisors LP lifted its position in Quest Diagnostics by 45.3% during the 2nd quarter. WFG Advisors LP now owns 966 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $107,000 after acquiring an additional 301 shares during the last quarter. Sun Life Financial INC lifted its position in Quest Diagnostics by 14,142.9% during the 2nd quarter. Sun Life Financial INC now owns 997 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $111,000 after acquiring an additional 990 shares during the last quarter. Parallel Advisors LLC lifted its position in Quest Diagnostics by 0.9% during the 2nd quarter. Parallel Advisors LLC now owns 1,291 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $140,000 after acquiring an additional 12 shares during the last quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC lifted its position in Quest Diagnostics by 300.0% during the 2nd quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 1,600 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $178,000 after acquiring an additional 1,200 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC acquired a new position in Quest Diagnostics during the 2nd quarter worth $180,000. 86.99% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of Quest Diagnostics (NYSE DGX) traded up 1.98% during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $95.08. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,807,088 shares. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $98.11 and its 200-day moving average price is $104.54. Quest Diagnostics has a 1-year low of $79.12 and a 1-year high of $112.96. The company has a market capitalization of $12.96 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.93 and a beta of 0.65.

Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 19th. The medical research company reported $1.39 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the 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 for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.92 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.37 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 2.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts predict that Quest Diagnostics will post $5.63 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, October 18th. Investors of record on Tuesday, October 3rd were paid a $0.45 dividend. This represents a $1.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.89%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, October 2nd. Quest Diagnostics’s payout ratio is presently 37.74%.

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).

Analyst Recommendations for Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX)

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