Shares of Brooks Automation, Inc. (NASDAQ:BRKS) gapped down prior to trading on Friday . The stock had previously closed at $24.08, but opened at $28.79. Brooks Automation shares last traded at $26.07, with a volume of 1460183 shares changing hands.

BRKS has been the topic of several research reports. BidaskClub lowered Brooks Automation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Citigroup Inc. upped their target price on Brooks Automation from $31.00 to $34.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday. ValuEngine lowered Brooks Automation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 22nd. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $26.00 target price on shares of Brooks Automation in a report on Thursday, August 3rd. Finally, Needham & Company LLC lowered Brooks Automation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, September 18th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $31.57.

The firm has a market capitalization of $1,833.96, a P/E ratio of 23.90 and a beta of 1.06.

Brooks Automation (NASDAQ:BRKS) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 9th. The semiconductor company reported $0.35 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.29 by $0.06. The business had revenue of $181.88 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $174.66 million. Brooks Automation had a return on equity of 13.40% and a net margin of 9.04%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 15.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.22 earnings per share. equities analysts forecast that Brooks Automation, Inc. will post 1.42 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 22nd. Investors of record on Friday, December 1st will be paid a dividend of $0.10 per share. This represents a $0.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.52%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, November 30th. Brooks Automation’s payout ratio is currently 44.44%.

In related news, CEO Stephen S. Schwartz sold 8,667 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $33.80, for a total transaction of $292,944.60. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CFO Lindon G. Robertson sold 3,990 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $33.80, for a total value of $134,862.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 19,784 shares of company stock worth $668,699. Corporate insiders own 2.24% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Quantbot Technologies LP purchased a new position in Brooks Automation during the second quarter worth about $104,000. Advisor Group Inc. purchased a new position in Brooks Automation during the second quarter worth about $122,000. Riverhead Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Brooks Automation by 49.9% during the second quarter. Riverhead Capital Management LLC now owns 5,697 shares of the semiconductor company’s stock worth $123,000 after buying an additional 1,897 shares during the period. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. lifted its position in Brooks Automation by 6.1% during the second quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. now owns 6,038 shares of the semiconductor company’s stock worth $131,000 after buying an additional 348 shares during the period. Finally, Flinton Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Brooks Automation by 49.3% during the second quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 6,272 shares of the semiconductor company’s stock worth $136,000 after buying an additional 2,072 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 90.61% of the company’s stock.

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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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