Capital Asset Advisory Services LLC purchased a new position in Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (NYSE:DGX) during the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the SEC. The institutional investor purchased 882 shares of the medical research company’s stock, valued at approximately $105,000.
A number of other large investors have also modified their holdings of the stock. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in Quest Diagnostics by 1.0% in the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 11,464,215 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $1,366,191,000 after buying an additional 113,416 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. grew its stake in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 2.3% during the 4th quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 2,517,648 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $300,028,000 after purchasing an additional 55,410 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its stake in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 4.3% during the 4th quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,927,478 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $229,685,000 after purchasing an additional 79,856 shares during the period. JPMorgan Chase & Co. grew its stake in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 11.6% during the 4th quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 1,877,995 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $223,799,000 after purchasing an additional 194,810 shares during the period. Finally, Nordea Investment Management AB grew its stake in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 19.8% during the 4th quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 1,730,977 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $206,281,000 after purchasing an additional 286,486 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 85.71% of the company’s stock.
Shares of DGX stock opened at $127.74 on Thursday. The stock’s fifty day moving average is $122.52 and its two-hundred day moving average is $122.20. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.62, a quick ratio of 1.32 and a current ratio of 1.40. The firm has a market capitalization of $17.05 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.79, a PEG ratio of 0.44 and a beta of 1.07. Quest Diagnostics Incorporated has a fifty-two week low of $84.00 and a fifty-two week high of $134.71.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, April 21st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, April 7th will be issued a dividend of $0.62 per share. This represents a $2.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.94%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, April 6th. This is a positive change from Quest Diagnostics’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.56. Quest Diagnostics’s payout ratio is currently 34.15%.
Quest Diagnostics announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share repurchase program on Thursday, February 4th that allows the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the medical research company to purchase up to 6.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are generally a sign that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.
A number of equities research analysts have recently commented on DGX shares. Citigroup raised their price objective on shares of Quest Diagnostics from $151.00 to $158.00 in a research note on Friday, January 29th. Morgan Stanley increased their target price on Quest Diagnostics from $130.00 to $136.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 18th. Finally, Robert W. Baird reiterated a “neutral” rating and set a $137.00 target price on shares of Quest Diagnostics in a research report on Thursday, March 18th. Ten investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, six have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. Quest Diagnostics presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $128.94.
In other news, SVP Michael E. Prevoznik sold 1,188 shares of Quest Diagnostics stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $116.95, for a total transaction of $138,936.60. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 42,596 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,981,602.20. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Michael E. Prevoznik sold 5,574 shares of Quest Diagnostics stock in a transaction on Wednesday, March 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $120.47, for a total value of $671,499.78. 1.49% of the stock is owned by insiders.
Quest Diagnostics Company Profile
Quest Diagnostics Incorporated provides diagnostic testing, information, and services in the United States and internationally. The company develops and delivers diagnostic information services, such as routine testing, non-routine and advanced clinical testing, anatomic pathology testing, and other diagnostic information services.
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