Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Cognex Corporation (NASDAQ:CGNX) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report released on Tuesday, July 4th. They currently have $95.00 price target on the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Cognex Corp. designs, develops, manufactures, and markets machine vision systems that are used to automate a wide range of manufacturing processes where vision is required. Cognex machine vision systems consist of two primary elements: a computer, which serves as a machine vision engine, and software that processes and analyzes images. When connected to a video camera, the machine vision system captures images and extracts information, which determines appropriate action for other equipment in the manufacturing process. “

A number of other research analysts have also issued reports on CGNX. TheStreet upgraded shares of Cognex Corporation from a c+ rating to a b rating in a research report on Thursday, March 9th. Needham & Company LLC lowered shares of Cognex Corporation from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, March 15th. Summit Redstone reiterated a buy rating on shares of Cognex Corporation in a research report on Thursday, March 30th. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) began coverage on shares of Cognex Corporation in a research report on Monday, April 3rd. They set a buy rating on the stock. Finally, Cowen and Company reduced their price target on shares of Cognex Corporation from $100.00 to $90.00 and set an outperform rating on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, May 2nd. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Cognex Corporation has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $82.75.

Cognex Corporation (NASDAQ:CGNX) traded down 1.13% during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $100.31. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 827,521 shares. Cognex Corporation has a 52 week low of $47.05 and a 52 week high of $110.69. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $90.96 and a 200-day moving average price of $83.70. The firm has a market cap of $8.68 billion, a P/E ratio of 45.82 and a beta of 1.43.

Cognex Corporation (NASDAQ:CGNX) last announced its earnings results on Monday, July 31st. The scientific and technical instruments company reported $0.63 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.55 by $0.08. Cognex Corporation had a net margin of 33.10% and a return on equity of 19.51%. The firm had revenue of $172.90 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $169.79 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.50 EPS. The business’s revenue was up 17.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts forecast that Cognex Corporation will post $2.42 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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Cognex Corporation announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase plan on Monday, May 1st that authorizes the company to repurchase $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the scientific and technical instruments company to buy up to 1.4% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 18th will be given a $0.085 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 16th. This represents a $0.34 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.34%. Cognex Corporation’s dividend payout ratio is currently 15.60%.

In other Cognex Corporation news, Director Jerry A. Schneider sold 5,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $102.67, for a total value of $513,350.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 6,000 shares in the company, valued at $616,020. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, CEO Robert Willett sold 43,981 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $89.79, for a total transaction of $3,949,053.99. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 20,020 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,797,595.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 112,400 shares of company stock worth $10,312,529 in the last 90 days. Company insiders own 5.60% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System increased its position in Cognex Corporation by 7.8% in the second quarter. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System now owns 104,348 shares of the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock valued at $8,859,000 after buying an additional 7,580 shares during the last quarter. BB&T Securities LLC increased its position in Cognex Corporation by 1.2% in the second quarter. BB&T Securities LLC now owns 10,050 shares of the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock valued at $853,000 after buying an additional 117 shares during the last quarter. Blair William & Co. IL increased its position in Cognex Corporation by 201.8% in the second quarter. Blair William & Co. IL now owns 19,845 shares of the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock valued at $1,685,000 after buying an additional 13,269 shares during the last quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA increased its position in Cognex Corporation by 68.0% in the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 35,774 shares of the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock valued at $3,037,000 after buying an additional 14,482 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc increased its position in Cognex Corporation by 24.0% in the second quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 65,867 shares of the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock valued at $5,592,000 after buying an additional 12,734 shares during the last quarter. 87.55% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Cognex Corporation Company Profile

Cognex Corporation (Cognex) is a provider of machine vision products that capture and analyze visual information in order to automate tasks, primarily in manufacturing processes, where vision is required. The Company operates through the machine vision technology segment. The Company’s machine vision products are used to automate the manufacture and tracking of discrete items, such as mobile phones, aspirin bottles and automobile tires, by locating, identifying, inspecting and measuring them during the manufacturing or distribution process.

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