The Agilent Technologies Inc. (A) Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research to “Buy”

The Agilent Technologies Inc. (A) Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research to “Buy”

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE:A) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Wednesday. The brokerage presently has a $52.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price objective would indicate a potential upside of 11.04% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Agilent Technologies is a broad-based OEM of test and measurement equipment. The company’s decision to divest/wind up underperforming businesses has enhanced its focus on the new Agilent, while enabling expansion of a solid recurring revenue base and diversification of geographic and industrial operations for growth. Also, the company’s focus on aligning investments so as to be oriented toward more attractive growth avenues and innovative high-margin product launches are positives.  Agilent’s broad-based portfolio and increased focus on segments offer higher growth potential. However, the macro weakness in the U.S. and Europe and forex headwinds may temper revenue growth with the significant increase in operating expenses impacting the bottom line.”

A number of other equities analysts have also commented on A. Robert W. Baird raised their target price on shares of Agilent Technologies from $48.00 to $52.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 18th. Evercore ISI raised their target price on shares of Agilent Technologies from $50.00 to $53.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 18th. BTIG Research reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $55.00 target price on shares of Agilent Technologies in a research report on Thursday, August 18th. Cowen and Company raised their target price on shares of Agilent Technologies from $49.00 to $51.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 18th. Finally, Barclays PLC reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $45.00 target price on shares of Agilent Technologies in a research report on Wednesday, June 8th. Six investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $48.25.

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Shares of Agilent Technologies (NYSE:A) opened at 46.83 on Wednesday. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $46.66 and a 200-day moving average price of $44.63. Agilent Technologies has a 12 month low of $34.15 and a 12 month high of $48.63. The company has a market capitalization of $15.19 billion, a PE ratio of 32.48 and a beta of 1.35.

Agilent Technologies (NYSE:A) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, August 17th. The company reported $0.49 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.47 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $1.04 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.05 billion. Agilent Technologies had a net margin of 11.59% and a return on equity of 14.97%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 3.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.44 earnings per share. Analysts forecast that Agilent Technologies will post $1.91 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 26th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, October 4th will be issued a $0.115 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, September 30th. This represents a $0.46 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.98%. Agilent Technologies’s dividend payout ratio is currently 31.72%.

In related news, insider Patrick Kaltenbach sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.30, for a total transaction of $94,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 22,463 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,062,499.90. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, VP Rodney Gonsalves sold 8,141 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.82, for a total transaction of $389,302.62. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 16,322 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $780,518.04. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of A. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of Agilent Technologies by 2.5% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 20,664,381 shares of the company’s stock valued at $916,673,000 after buying an additional 494,723 shares during the period. State Street Corp boosted its position in shares of Agilent Technologies by 0.4% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 13,160,306 shares of the company’s stock valued at $583,792,000 after buying an additional 50,941 shares during the period. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. boosted its position in shares of Agilent Technologies by 2.2% in the first quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 8,917,030 shares of the company’s stock valued at $355,344,000 after buying an additional 192,431 shares during the period. BlackRock Fund Advisors boosted its position in shares of Agilent Technologies by 2.9% in the second quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 5,492,514 shares of the company’s stock valued at $243,648,000 after buying an additional 157,286 shares during the period. Finally, Primecap Management Co. CA boosted its position in shares of Agilent Technologies by 0.9% in the first quarter. Primecap Management Co. CA now owns 5,172,590 shares of the company’s stock valued at $206,128,000 after buying an additional 43,720 shares during the period.

About Agilent Technologies

Agilent Technologies, Inc provides application focused solutions that include instruments, software, services and consumables for the entire laboratory workflow. The Company serves the life sciences, diagnostics and applied chemical markets. It has three business segments: life sciences and applied markets business, diagnostics and genomics business, and Agilent CrossLab business.

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