Brooks Automation, Inc (NASDAQ:BRKS) shares hit a new 52-week high during mid-day trading on Monday after Citigroup raised their price target on the stock to $26.00. Citigroup currently has a buy rating on the stock. Brooks Automation traded as high as $22.04 and last traded at $22.04, with a volume of 240,922 shares trading hands. The stock had previously closed at $21.86.

Other research analysts have also issued research reports about the company. B. Riley reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $21.00 target price on shares of Brooks Automation in a research report on Monday, January 16th. Needham & Company LLC increased their target price on Brooks Automation to $22.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, February 2nd. Zacks Investment Research raised Brooks Automation from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $23.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Friday, February 3rd. Credit Suisse Group AG raised Brooks Automation from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and increased their price objective for the company from $13.00 to $17.00 in a research note on Monday, January 9th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus downgraded Brooks Automation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $17.00 price objective for the company. in a research note on Tuesday, January 3rd. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, five have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Brooks Automation presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $21.00.

In related news, SVP William T. Montone sold 12,500 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, January 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $17.09, for a total value of $213,625.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 151,756 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,593,510.04. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP Jason Joseph sold 8,256 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, January 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $16.77, for a total value of $138,453.12. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 134,802 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,260,629.54. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 106,007 shares of company stock valued at $2,084,557. 2.24% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Vident Investment Advisory LLC increased its position in Brooks Automation by 3.2% in the fourth quarter. Vident Investment Advisory LLC now owns 77,387 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,321,000 after buying an additional 2,389 shares in the last quarter. Norges Bank purchased a new position in Brooks Automation during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $10,381,000. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans increased its position in Brooks Automation by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans now owns 453,228 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,737,000 after buying an additional 1,910 shares in the last quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. purchased a new position in Brooks Automation during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $240,000. Finally, Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY increased its position in Brooks Automation by 3.5% in the fourth quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY now owns 47,483 shares of the company’s stock valued at $811,000 after buying an additional 1,588 shares in the last quarter. 88.84% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

The stock’s market capitalization is $1.46 billion. The company’s 50-day moving average is $20.73 and its 200-day moving average is $16.40.

Brooks Automation (NASDAQ:BRKS) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, February 1st. The company reported $0.25 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.04. The business had revenue of $160 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $160.03 million. Brooks Automation had a positive return on equity of 8.51% and a negative net margin of 8.49%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 33.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.02 earnings per share. On average, analysts predict that Brooks Automation, Inc will post $0.98 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 24th. Stockholders of record on Friday, March 3rd will be issued a $0.10 dividend. This represents a $0.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.83%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, March 1st. Brooks Automation’s payout ratio is currently -53.33%.

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About Brooks Automation

Brooks Automation, Inc is a provider of automation and cryogenic solutions for various applications and markets. The Company operates through two segments: Brooks Semiconductor Solutions Group and Brooks Life Science Systems. The Brooks Semiconductor Solutions Group segment offers critical automated transport, vacuum and contamination controls solutions and services.

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