Zacks Investment Research Lowers Novartis AG (NVS) to Hold

Novartis AG (NYSE:NVS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Friday, October 6th.

According to Zacks, “Novartis has a strong oncology portfolio of drugs like Afinitor, Exjade, Jakavi, Zykadia, Tasigna, Jadenu, and the recently approved Kisqali. The recent approval of Kymriah for acute lymphoblastic leukemia is a major boost for Novartis given the potential in the CAR T therapy space.Growth drivers like Cosentyx and Entresto, more than offset the impact of generic erosion, mainly due to Glivec. Cosentyx hit blockbuster status in 2016. Earlier, Novartis announced that it is mulling strategic options for its lagging eye-care unit Alcon which includes retaining the business, or a separation via capital market transactions such as a spin-off or an initial public offering. The company will elaborate on its plans for Alcon by end of the year. We are also impressed by the progress in the biosimilars portfolio as the company is on track to launch five more biosimilars by 2020. Shares of the company have outperformed the industry so far in 2017.”

A number of other equities analysts have also weighed in on the company. J P Morgan Chase & Co reaffirmed a “neutral” rating on shares of Novartis AG in a research note on Tuesday, August 29th. Credit Suisse Group lowered Novartis AG from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $82.25 price objective for the company. in a research note on Wednesday, July 5th. Morgan Stanley raised Novartis AG from an “underweight” rating to an “overweight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 26th. Leerink Swann reissued a “market perform” rating and set a $83.00 price target on shares of Novartis AG in a research note on Thursday, June 22nd. Finally, Cowen and Company set a $77.00 price target on Novartis AG and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 11th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $84.13.

Novartis AG (NYSE:NVS) opened at 86.04 on Friday. Novartis AG has a 1-year low of $66.93 and a 1-year high of $86.90. The firm has a market cap of $201.58 billion, a P/E ratio of 31.41 and a beta of 0.73. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $85.46 and a 200-day moving average price of $82.10.

Novartis AG (NYSE:NVS) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 18th. The company reported $1.22 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.16 by $0.06. The firm had revenue of $12.24 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $12.20 billion. Novartis AG had a return on equity of 15.51% and a net margin of 13.52%. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 1.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $1.23 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Novartis AG will post $4.75 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. City Holding Co. increased its holdings in Novartis AG by 4.6% during the 2nd quarter. City Holding Co. now owns 1,217 shares of the company’s stock worth $102,000 after purchasing an additional 54 shares during the period. WFG Advisors LP increased its holdings in Novartis AG by 38.1% during the 2nd quarter. WFG Advisors LP now owns 1,221 shares of the company’s stock worth $102,000 after purchasing an additional 337 shares during the period. Archford Capital Strategies LLC increased its holdings in Novartis AG by 72.3% during the 1st quarter. Archford Capital Strategies LLC now owns 1,480 shares of the company’s stock worth $110,000 after purchasing an additional 621 shares during the period. Kernodle & Katon Asset Management Group LLC increased its holdings in Novartis AG by 3.4% during the 1st quarter. Kernodle & Katon Asset Management Group LLC now owns 1,488 shares of the company’s stock worth $111,000 after purchasing an additional 49 shares during the period. Finally, North Star Investment Management Corp. increased its holdings in Novartis AG by 1.0% during the 2nd quarter. North Star Investment Management Corp. now owns 1,542 shares of the company’s stock worth $129,000 after purchasing an additional 16 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 10.93% of the company’s stock.

About Novartis AG

Novartis AG is a holding company, which provides healthcare solutions. The Company is engaged in the research, development, manufacturing and marketing of a range of healthcare products led by pharmaceuticals. The Company’s segments include Innovative Medicines, Sandoz, Alcon and Corporate activities.

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Analyst Recommendations for Novartis AG (NYSE:NVS)

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