Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Becton Dickinson and (BDX) to Hold

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Becton Dickinson and (NYSE:BDX) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Friday, January 5th.

According to Zacks, “In the last six months,  Becton, Dickinson and Company, popularly known as BD, has outperformed the broader industry. BD recently completed the acquisition of C. R. Bard. The company will establish a new segment — BD Interventional in which Bard will be integrated. We view the acquisition as a strategic one which will generate benefits from complementary businesses and geographical expansion. Further, BD announced that it will divest its soft tissue core needle biopsy products for $100 million to Merit Medical. On the flipside, lackluster performance by the Medical segment is a concern. Performance in the segment was affected by sluggishness in the Medication Management Solutions and Pharmaceutical Systems units in the United States. BD temporarily paused shipments of its insulin infusion sets. The voluntary recall of Barricor blood collection tubes in the recent past also adds to our woes.”

A number of other equities research analysts have also issued reports on BDX. Citigroup raised shares of Becton Dickinson and from a sell rating to a neutral rating in a report on Friday, January 5th. Evercore ISI initiated coverage on shares of Becton Dickinson and in a research note on Wednesday, January 3rd. They set an outperform rating and a $245.00 target price for the company. KeyCorp initiated coverage on shares of Becton Dickinson and in a research note on Friday, January 5th. They set an overweight rating and a $260.00 target price for the company. Deutsche Bank set a $260.00 target price on shares of Becton Dickinson and and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Friday, December 29th. Finally, Argus increased their target price on shares of Becton Dickinson and to $235.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, December 14th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eleven have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $230.20.

Shares of Becton Dickinson and (BDX) traded up $1.89 on Friday, hitting $227.71. 1,870,458 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,668,844. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.44, a current ratio of 5.58 and a quick ratio of 5.03. Becton Dickinson and has a 12-month low of $169.19 and a 12-month high of $229.68. The stock has a market capitalization of $52,240.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 48.97, a P/E/G ratio of 1.78 and a beta of 1.07.

Becton Dickinson and (NYSE:BDX) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 2nd. The medical instruments supplier reported $2.40 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.37 by $0.03. Becton Dickinson and had a net margin of 8.52% and a return on equity of 20.56%. The firm had revenue of $3.17 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.14 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $2.12 earnings per share. Becton Dickinson and’s quarterly revenue was down 2.0% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts anticipate that Becton Dickinson and will post 10.66 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 29th. Investors of record on Friday, December 8th were issued a $0.75 dividend. This is a boost from Becton Dickinson and’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.73. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, December 7th. This represents a $3.00 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.32%. Becton Dickinson and’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 64.52%.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Mitsubishi UFJ Securities Holdings Co. Ltd. raised its holdings in Becton Dickinson and by 55.8% during the second quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Securities Holdings Co. Ltd. now owns 670 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $131,000 after purchasing an additional 240 shares in the last quarter. Harfst & Associates Inc. raised its holdings in Becton Dickinson and by 46.4% during the second quarter. Harfst & Associates Inc. now owns 697 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $135,000 after purchasing an additional 221 shares in the last quarter. Harvest Fund Management Co. Ltd raised its holdings in Becton Dickinson and by 82.8% during the second quarter. Harvest Fund Management Co. Ltd now owns 746 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $146,000 after purchasing an additional 338 shares in the last quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC raised its holdings in Becton Dickinson and by 259.7% during the second quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 831 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $162,000 after purchasing an additional 600 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Valeo Financial Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Becton Dickinson and during the third quarter worth approximately $191,000. 75.54% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Becton Dickinson and Company Profile

Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD) is a global medical technology company engaged in the development, manufacture and sale of a range of medical supplies, devices, laboratory equipment and diagnostic products. The Company operates through two segments: BD Medical and BD Life Sciences. The BD Medical segment produces an array of medical technologies and devices that are used to help improve healthcare delivery in a range of settings.

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