Laboratory Corp. of America (NYSE:LH) Raised to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

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Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Laboratory Corp. of America (NYSE:LH) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note published on Monday morning, Zacks.com reports. The firm currently has $186.00 target price on the medical research company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Over the past six months, shares of LabCorp have outpaced its industry. Its Diagnostics grew organically in terms of both revenue and volume despite additional price reductions due to PAMA and the loss of exclusivity in two managed care contracts. In the last reported quarter, it also exhibited strong underlying and organic growth across its Drug Development business banking on solid execution of three fundamental strategies. The recently-completed business swap transaction with Envigo also buoys optimism. LabCorp put up a robust show in the third quarter of 2019 with better-than-expected results. However, the disposition of businesses and the implementation of the PAMA dented growth. Unfavorable currency transaction continues to remain as a major headwind. The company expects the rest of 2019 to continue to witness similar hurdles.”

Several other brokerages have also recently weighed in on LH. Wells Fargo & Co began coverage on Laboratory Corp. of America in a report on Tuesday, January 7th. They set an overweight rating and a $210.00 target price for the company. ValuEngine cut Laboratory Corp. of America from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Tuesday, December 3rd. Bank of America cut Laboratory Corp. of America from a neutral rating to an underperform rating in a report on Friday, January 3rd. Canaccord Genuity restated a hold rating and set a $170.00 target price on shares of Laboratory Corp. of America in a report on Thursday, October 24th. Finally, UBS Group dropped their target price on Laboratory Corp. of America from $204.00 to $200.00 and set a buy rating for the company in a report on Monday, October 21st. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $189.05.

Shares of LH stock opened at $178.23 on Monday. The stock has a market capitalization of $17.52 billion, a PE ratio of 16.17, a P/E/G ratio of 1.77 and a beta of 1.02. Laboratory Corp. of America has a 1-year low of $131.26 and a 1-year high of $181.49. The business has a 50-day moving average of $170.63 and a 200 day moving average of $169.39. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.93, a current ratio of 1.17 and a quick ratio of 1.08.

Laboratory Corp. of America (NYSE:LH) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, October 24th. The medical research company reported $2.90 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $2.85 by $0.05. The company had revenue of $2.93 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.91 billion. Laboratory Corp. of America had a return on equity of 15.33% and a net margin of 6.63%. Laboratory Corp. of America’s quarterly revenue was up 3.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $2.74 EPS. Analysts anticipate that Laboratory Corp. of America will post 11.25 EPS for the current year.

In other Laboratory Corp. of America news, CEO David P. King sold 30,177 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $165.40, for a total transaction of $4,991,275.80. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Corporate insiders own 0.74% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Wealthfront Advisers LLC raised its position in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America by 3.1% in the 3rd quarter. Wealthfront Advisers LLC now owns 2,054 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $345,000 after acquiring an additional 62 shares in the last quarter. DNB Asset Management AS raised its position in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America by 0.6% in the 3rd quarter. DNB Asset Management AS now owns 10,579 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $1,777,000 after acquiring an additional 64 shares in the last quarter. Clear Harbor Asset Management LLC raised its position in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America by 3.3% in the 3rd quarter. Clear Harbor Asset Management LLC now owns 2,373 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $399,000 after acquiring an additional 75 shares in the last quarter. Smith Graham & Co. Investment Advisors LP raised its position in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America by 0.3% in the 3rd quarter. Smith Graham & Co. Investment Advisors LP now owns 27,050 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $4,544,000 after acquiring an additional 80 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Carderock Capital Management Inc. raised its position in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America by 0.3% in the 3rd quarter. Carderock Capital Management Inc. now owns 26,122 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $4,388,000 after acquiring an additional 82 shares in the last quarter. 90.38% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Laboratory Corp. of America

Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings operates as an independent clinical laboratory company worldwide. It operates in two segments, LabCorp Diagnostics (LCD) and Covance Drug Development. It offers various clinical laboratory tests, such as blood chemistry analyses, urinalyses, blood cell counts, thyroid tests, Pap tests, hemoglobin A1C and vitamin D products, prostate-specific antigens, tests for sexually-transmitted diseases, hepatitis C tests, microbiology cultures and procedures, and alcohol and other substance-abuse tests.

Further Reading: Dividend Reinvestment Plan (DRIP)

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