Traders Buy High Volume of Call Options on Abaxis (ABAX)

Abaxis (NASDAQ:ABAX) saw some unusual options trading on Thursday. Stock traders bought 1,103 call options on the stock. This is an increase of 1,905% compared to the typical daily volume of 55 call options.

Abaxis opened at $83.72 on Friday, Marketbeat reports. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.89 billion, a P/E ratio of 64.11, a PEG ratio of 5.29 and a beta of 1.19. Abaxis has a one year low of $82.19 and a one year high of $83.02.

Abaxis (NASDAQ:ABAX) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 26th. The medical research company reported $0.42 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.32 by $0.10. Abaxis had a return on equity of 10.65% and a net margin of 11.11%. The business had revenue of $67.90 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $66.02 million. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.33 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 16.7% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts anticipate that Abaxis will post 1.44 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 1st will be paid a $0.18 dividend. This is an increase from Abaxis’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.16. This represents a $0.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.86%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, May 31st. Abaxis’s payout ratio is presently 49.61%.

Several analysts have recently weighed in on the company. Stifel Nicolaus raised their target price on Abaxis from $48.00 to $57.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, January 26th. BidaskClub upgraded Abaxis from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, January 30th. Canaccord Genuity reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $65.00 price target on shares of Abaxis in a research note on Monday, January 29th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Abaxis from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 31st. Finally, Sidoti downgraded Abaxis from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating, one has assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $62.10.

In other news, COO Donald Peter Wood sold 10,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, March 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $68.99, for a total transaction of $689,900.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Achim Henkel sold 3,600 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, February 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $69.08, for a total value of $248,688.00. Following the sale, the insider now owns 57,650 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,982,462. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 28,012 shares of company stock worth $1,941,059 over the last three months. 4.30% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. We Are One Seven LLC acquired a new position in Abaxis in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $108,000. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank boosted its stake in Abaxis by 154.3% in the first quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 2,085 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $147,000 after acquiring an additional 1,265 shares during the period. SG Americas Securities LLC acquired a new position in Abaxis in the first quarter valued at approximately $181,000. PEAK6 Investments L.P. acquired a new position in Abaxis in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $202,000. Finally, Gotham Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in Abaxis in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $203,000. Institutional investors own 99.28% of the company’s stock.

Abaxis Company Profile

Abaxis, Inc develops, manufactures, markets, and sells portable blood analysis systems for use in human or veterinary patient care settings to provide rapid blood constituent measurements for clinicians worldwide. It operates in two segments, Medical Market and Veterinary Market. The company offers Piccolo chemistry analyzers with rapid blood constituent measurements for use in human patient care; and Piccolo profiles that are single-use medical reagents.

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