Raymond James Financial upgraded shares of Abaxis (NASDAQ:ABAX) from an underperform rating to a market perform rating in a research report released on Tuesday morning, MarketBeat.com reports.

A number of other research firms also recently weighed in on ABAX. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Abaxis from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Monday. Northcoast Research upgraded shares of Abaxis from a neutral rating to a buy rating in a research note on Friday, January 5th. Canaccord Genuity reiterated a hold rating and issued a $47.00 target price (up previously from $46.00) on shares of Abaxis in a research note on Friday, October 27th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Abaxis from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, December 21st. Finally, TheStreet upgraded shares of Abaxis from a c+ rating to a b- rating in a research note on Wednesday, November 29th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $47.63.

Shares of Abaxis (NASDAQ ABAX) opened at $62.28 on Tuesday. The firm has a market capitalization of $1,410.00, a P/E ratio of 51.90 and a beta of 0.86. Abaxis has a 1-year low of $43.66 and a 1-year high of $62.98.

Abaxis (NASDAQ:ABAX) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 24th. The medical research company reported $0.29 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.27 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $58.90 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $60.85 million. Abaxis had a return on equity of 10.18% and a net margin of 11.98%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up .5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $0.34 earnings per share. equities research analysts predict that Abaxis will post 1.08 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Abaxis declared that its board has initiated a share repurchase plan on Tuesday, October 24th that permits the company to repurchase $21.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization permits the medical research company to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are usually a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, December 1st were paid a $0.16 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, November 30th. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.03%. This is a boost from Abaxis’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.14. Abaxis’s payout ratio is 53.33%.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Cetera Investment Advisers bought a new position in shares of Abaxis in the third quarter valued at approximately $263,000. Stifel Financial Corp raised its stake in shares of Abaxis by 12.2% in the third quarter. Stifel Financial Corp now owns 26,512 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $1,183,000 after acquiring an additional 2,878 shares during the last quarter. OxFORD Asset Management LLP bought a new position in Abaxis in the 3rd quarter worth approximately $357,000. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position in Abaxis by 1.7% in the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 683,986 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $30,540,000 after purchasing an additional 11,757 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company MN raised its position in Abaxis by 1.1% in the 3rd quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 635,103 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $28,357,000 after purchasing an additional 6,974 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 97.66% of the company’s stock.

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About Abaxis

Abaxis, Inc is a developer, manufacturer and marketer of portable blood analysis systems that are used in medical specialties in human or veterinary patient care to provide clinicians with blood constituent measurements. The Company markets and sells its products around the world through independent distributors and direct sales force.

Analyst Recommendations for Abaxis (NASDAQ:ABAX)

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