Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT)’s share price reached a new 52-week high on Tuesday . The stock traded as high as $56.73 and last traded at $56.40, with a volume of 6053800 shares trading hands. The stock had previously closed at $55.50.

Several brokerages have recently commented on ABT. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Abbott Laboratories from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $58.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Friday, September 22nd. Barclays upped their price objective on shares of Abbott Laboratories from $57.00 to $60.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Thursday, September 28th. J P Morgan Chase & Co began coverage on shares of Abbott Laboratories in a report on Friday, October 6th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $60.00 price objective on the stock. Jefferies Group restated a “buy” rating and issued a $65.00 price objective on shares of Abbott Laboratories in a report on Thursday, October 19th. Finally, Cowen restated a “buy” rating on shares of Abbott Laboratories in a report on Sunday, September 24th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company. Abbott Laboratories currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $57.56.

The company has a market cap of $98,169.90, a P/E ratio of 23.40, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.11 and a beta of 1.06. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72, a current ratio of 2.69 and a quick ratio of 2.26.

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, October 18th. The healthcare product maker reported $0.66 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.65 by $0.01. Abbott Laboratories had a net margin of 8.21% and a return on equity of 7.07%. The firm had revenue of $6.83 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $6.72 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.59 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 28.8% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts expect that Abbott Laboratories will post 2.49 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, February 15th. Investors of record on Friday, January 12th will be paid a dividend of $0.28 per share. This is an increase from Abbott Laboratories’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.27. This represents a $1.12 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.96%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, January 11th. Abbott Laboratories’s dividend payout ratio is presently 83.47%.

In other Abbott Laboratories news, Chairman Miles D. White sold 276,886 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.41, for a total value of $15,065,367.26. Following the sale, the chairman now directly owns 3,677,913 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $200,115,246.33. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Jaime Contreras sold 52,700 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, September 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $51.97, for a total transaction of $2,738,819.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 58,739 shares in the company, valued at $3,052,665.83. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 616,332 shares of company stock worth $33,579,226. 0.76% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in ABT. Wade G W & Inc. increased its position in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 13.3% in the 1st quarter. Wade G W & Inc. now owns 12,155 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock valued at $540,000 after purchasing an additional 1,423 shares during the last quarter. Pettyjohn Wood & White Inc. increased its position in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 50.0% in the 1st quarter. Pettyjohn Wood & White Inc. now owns 69,034 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock valued at $3,066,000 after purchasing an additional 23,000 shares during the last quarter. Symphony Asset Management LLC increased its position in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 7.3% in the 1st quarter. Symphony Asset Management LLC now owns 114,403 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock valued at $5,080,000 after purchasing an additional 7,823 shares during the last quarter. First Personal Financial Services increased its position in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 9.4% in the 1st quarter. First Personal Financial Services now owns 13,252 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock valued at $589,000 after purchasing an additional 1,135 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Check Capital Management Inc. CA increased its position in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 236.5% in the 1st quarter. Check Capital Management Inc. CA now owns 317,451 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock valued at $14,098,000 after purchasing an additional 223,100 shares during the last quarter. 71.12% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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Abbott Laboratories Company Profile

Abbott Laboratories is engaged in the discovery, development, manufacture and sale of a range of healthcare products. The Company operates through four segments: Established Pharmaceutical Products, Diagnostic Products, Nutritional Products and Vascular Products. Its Established Pharmaceutical Products include a range of branded generic pharmaceuticals manufactured around the world and marketed and sold outside the United States.

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