Steris Corp. (NYSE:STE) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “STERIS ended second-quarter fiscal 2017 on a dismal note, with earnings and revenues missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate. The company’s lowered revenue guidance for fiscal 2017 is further disappointing. However, even in the face of currency and market headwinds, STERIS’ business grew both organically and through strategic acquisitions in the quarter. Further, growth in free cash flow is indicative of the strong cash balance reserve the company currently holds. Also, with rapidly aging population in past few years a greater number of individuals are entering into their prime healthcare consumption years. This in turn is expected to boost the healthcare and pharmaceuticals industries, from where STERIS earns bulk of its revenues. Yet, governments and insurance companies’ consistent efforts to contain the rising cost of healthcare, has been putting a lot of pressure on STERIS. Moreover, customer consolidation remains a concern.”

Separately, JMP Securities reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Steris Corp. in a research report on Friday, November 4th.

Steris Corp. (NYSE:STE) opened at 66.80 on Tuesday. Steris Corp. has a 12 month low of $61.38 and a 12 month high of $78.77. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $67.76 and its 200 day moving average is $69.53. The firm has a market cap of $5.69 billion, a PE ratio of 33.72 and a beta of 1.30.

Steris Corp. (NYSE:STE) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, November 2nd. The company reported $0.89 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.90 by $0.01. The business earned $646.40 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $670.24 million. Steris Corp. had a return on equity of 9.89% and a net margin of 6.41%. The company’s revenue was up 31.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.83 EPS. On average, equities analysts forecast that Steris Corp. will post $3.90 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, December 21st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, November 23rd will be given a $0.28 dividend. This represents a $1.12 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.68%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, November 21st. Steris Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 57.14%.

In other news, Director Richard Martin Steeves sold 204,778 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $71.19, for a total value of $14,578,145.82. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 165,434 shares in the company, valued at $11,777,246.46. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, VP Sudhir K. Pahwa sold 1,028 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.13, for a total value of $72,093.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 2.52% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Dearborn Partners LLC boosted its stake in Steris Corp. by 2.1% in the second quarter. Dearborn Partners LLC now owns 267,387 shares of the company’s stock worth $18,383,000 after buying an additional 5,433 shares in the last quarter. GWM Advisors LLC bought a new stake in Steris Corp. during the second quarter worth approximately $360,000. Villere ST Denis J & Co. LLC bought a new stake in Steris Corp. during the second quarter worth approximately $46,505,000. Capstone Asset Management Co. boosted its stake in Steris Corp. by 7.4% in the second quarter. Capstone Asset Management Co. now owns 8,780 shares of the company’s stock worth $604,000 after buying an additional 608 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Fisher Asset Management LLC boosted its stake in Steris Corp. by 0.5% in the second quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 1,622,504 shares of the company’s stock worth $112,099,000 after buying an additional 8,584 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 91.09% of the company’s stock.

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Steris Corp. Company Profile

STERIS Corporation (STERIS) is a provider of infection prevention and other procedural products and services. The Company is focused on healthcare, pharmaceutical and research. The Company operates through three business segments: Healthcare, Life Sciences and STERIS Isomedix Services. The Healthcare segment provides surgical, sterile processing, infection prevention and gastrointestinal solutions.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:STE

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