Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) was the recipient of a significant growth in short interest in the month of January. As of January 31st, there was short interest totalling 13,229,656 shares, a growth of 36.6% from the January 12th total of 9,685,399 shares. Currently, 0.8% of the company’s shares are short sold. Based on an average daily volume of 8,362,357 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 1.6 days.

In related news, insider Alejandro D. Wellisch sold 2,153 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $55.86, for a total value of $120,266.58. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 10,256 shares in the company, valued at $572,900.16. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, EVP Stephen R. Fussell sold 13,313 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, January 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.84, for a total value of $836,588.92. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 152,343 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $9,573,234.12. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 374,458 shares of company stock valued at $20,752,706 in the last quarter. 0.76% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of ABT. Rowland & Co. Investment Counsel ADV purchased a new stake in shares of Abbott Laboratories during the fourth quarter valued at $102,000. Icon Wealth Partners LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Abbott Laboratories during the fourth quarter valued at $102,000. Heritage Trust Co grew its holdings in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 10.1% during the second quarter. Heritage Trust Co now owns 2,175 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock valued at $106,000 after buying an additional 200 shares during the last quarter. Tributary Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Abbott Laboratories during the third quarter valued at $106,000. Finally, Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 17.7% during the second quarter. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. now owns 2,463 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock valued at $120,000 after buying an additional 370 shares during the last quarter. 70.61% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) opened at $58.28 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $101,440.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 291.40, a PEG ratio of 1.72 and a beta of 1.55. The company has a current ratio of 2.69, a quick ratio of 2.26 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72. Abbott Laboratories has a 12-month low of $42.31 and a 12-month high of $64.60.

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, January 24th. The healthcare product maker reported $0.74 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.73 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $7.59 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $7.38 billion. Abbott Laboratories had a return on equity of 13.80% and a net margin of 1.74%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 42.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.65 earnings per share. equities research analysts anticipate that Abbott Laboratories will post 2.86 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, February 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, January 12th will be given a dividend of $0.28 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, January 11th. This is an increase from Abbott Laboratories’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.27. This represents a $1.12 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.92%. Abbott Laboratories’s dividend payout ratio is presently 560.00%.

ABT has been the subject of a number of research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Abbott Laboratories from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $61.00 price target for the company in a report on Tuesday, October 31st. Royal Bank of Canada reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $65.00 price objective on shares of Abbott Laboratories in a research note on Tuesday, January 9th. BMO Capital Markets raised shares of Abbott Laboratories from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and boosted their price objective for the stock from $58.00 to $65.00 in a research note on Tuesday, December 12th. Morgan Stanley raised shares of Abbott Laboratories from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $67.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, January 2nd. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised shares of Abbott Laboratories from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $60.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, January 2nd. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fourteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Abbott Laboratories currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $65.47.

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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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