Growing Through Challenges? – Abbott Laboratories (ABT)


    BlackRock Fund Advisors recently announced the acquisition of new stake in Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT). The institutional investor has increased its shareholding in the Healthcare company by 3.95% to 87.6 million shares with purchase of 3.33 million shares. This fresh investment now brings its stake to 4.95% valued currently at $8.82 billion. In addition, SSgA Funds Management, Inc. raised its holdings by 0.47 million to 74.56 million shares. And Capital Research & Management Co.. has lifted its position by 1.67% or 0.93 million shares – to 56.71 million shares.

    With over 6.89 million Abbott Laboratories (ABT) shares trading Monday and a closing price of $109.47 on the day, the dollar volume was approximately $753.81 million. The shares have shown a positive weekly performance of 7.97% and its price on 08/31/20 lost nearly -1.19%. Currently, there are 1.77B common shares owned by the public and among those 1.76B shares have been available to trade.

    An analysis of what Wall Street brokers have to say about the expected price targets for this stock gives us this picture: 20 analysts who have offered their price forecasts for ABT have a consensus price objective of $114.27. The analysts have set the share’s price value over the next 12 months at a high of $136.00 and a low of $94.00 should the stock experience a downside. Incidentally, analysts’ outlook for the Abbott Laboratories stock is 1.90 for the next 12 months. The average price target is -1.07% below its last price level and a downside to the estimated low will see the stock lose -16.46% over that period. But an upside of 19.51% will see the stock hit the forecast high price target while mean target price for the stock is $113.00.

    Insiders at the company have transacted a total of 143 times over the past 12 months, according to data filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). 59 of these insider trades were purchases, accounting for 1,433,421 shares. Insider sales of the common stock occurred on 84 occasions, with total insider shares sold totaling 1,195,980 shares.

    The top 3 mutual fund holders in Abbott Laboratories are Vanguard Total Stock Market Index, Vanguard 500 Index Fund, and American Funds Investment Company. Vanguard Total Stock Market Index owns 50.27 million shares of the company’s stock, all valued at over $5.06 billion. The company sold -0.15 million shares recently to bring their total holdings to about 2.84% of the shares outstanding. Vanguard 500 Index Fund sold -0.22 million shares to see its total holdings shrink to 36.48 million shares valued at over $3.67 billion and representing 2.06% of the shares outstanding. American Funds Investment Company sold -0.42 million shares to bring its total holdings to over 30.72 million shares at a value of $3.09 billion. American Funds Investment Company now owns shares totaling to 1.74% of the shares outstanding.

    Shares of Abbott Laboratories (NYSE: ABT) opened at $110.70, down -$0.09 from a prior closing price of $110.79. However, the script later closed the day at $109.47, down -1.19%. The company’s stock has a 5-day price change of 7.97% and 18.19% over the past three months. ABT shares are trading 26.03% year to date (YTD), with the 12-month market performance up to 28.31% higher. It has a 12-month low price of $61.61 and touched a high of $114.19 over the same period. Currently, 6.89 million shares have been traded, compared to an average intraday trading volume of 5.71 million shares. The stock is trading above its simple moving averages at the SMA20, SMA50, and SMA200, as the current price level is off by 7.22%, 11.91%, and 22.57% respectively.

    Institutional ownership of Abbott Laboratories (NYSE: ABT) shares accounts for 75.60% of the company’s 1.77B shares outstanding. Mutual fund holders own 4.14%, while other institutional holders and individual stakeholders account for 41.12% and 34.20% respectively.

    It has a market capitalization of $194.69B and a beta (3y monthly) value of 0.96. The stock’s trailing 12-month PE ratio is 63.31, while the earnings-per-share (ttm) stands at $1.73. The company has a PEG of 5.49 and a Quick Ratio of 1.10 with the debt-to-equity ratio at 0.64. Price movements for the stock have been influenced by the stock’s volatility, which stands at 2.82% over the week and 1.95% over the month.

    Analysts forecast that Abbott Laboratories (ABT) will achieve an EPS of $0.89 for the current quarter, $1.18 for the next quarter and $4.04 for 2021. The lowest estimate earnings-per-share for the quarter is $0.84 while analysts give the company a high EPS estimate of $0.96. Comparatively, EPS for the current quarter was $0.84 a year ago. Earnings per share for the fiscal year are expected to increase by 45.20%, and 20.90% over the next financial year. EPS should shrink at an annualized rate of 11.53% over the next five years, compared to 12.40% over the past 5-year period.

    If you are looking to buy this stock, then you may note that the average analyst recommendation by 20 brokerage firm advisors rate Abbott Laboratories (ABT) as a “Strong Buy” at a consensus score of 1.90. Specifically, 13 Wall Street analysts polled rate the stock as a buy, while 3 of the 20 advise that investors “hold,” and 2 rated it as a “Sell.”

    Looking at the support for the ABT, a number of firms have released research notes about the stock. Goldman stated their Sell rating for the stock in a research note on June 01, 2020, with the firm’s price target at $84. Citigroup coverage for the Abbott Laboratories (ABT) stock in a research note released on March 05, 2020 offered a Buy rating with a price target of $96. Goldman was of a view on February 13, 2020 that the stock is Neutral, while BTIG Research gave the stock Neutral rating on February 06, 2020, issuing a price target of. Guggenheim on their part issued Neutral rating on January 02, 2020.


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