Marshall Wace North America L.P. cut its stake in shares of Quest Diagnostics Inc (NYSE:DGX) by 21.3% in the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 2,092,866 shares of the medical research company’s stock after selling 565,264 shares during the quarter. Quest Diagnostics makes up approximately 1.6% of Marshall Wace North America L.P.’s holdings, making the stock its 13th biggest position. Marshall Wace North America L.P. owned about 1.54% of Quest Diagnostics worth $225,841,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other large investors also recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Marshall Wace LLP lifted its holdings in Quest Diagnostics by 105.1% in the 3rd quarter. Marshall Wace LLP now owns 1,525,559 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $164,623,000 after purchasing an additional 781,703 shares in the last quarter. Strategic Wealth Partners Ltd. lifted its holdings in Quest Diagnostics by 12.3% in the 3rd quarter. Strategic Wealth Partners Ltd. now owns 10,469 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $1,130,000 after purchasing an additional 1,143 shares in the last quarter. HM Payson & Co. lifted its holdings in Quest Diagnostics by 28.3% in the 3rd quarter. HM Payson & Co. now owns 13,573 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $1,465,000 after purchasing an additional 2,998 shares in the last quarter. Belpointe Asset Management LLC purchased a new position in Quest Diagnostics in the 3rd quarter worth approximately $125,000. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its holdings in Quest Diagnostics by 1.4% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 14,500,290 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $1,564,725,000 after purchasing an additional 201,951 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 86.26% of the company’s stock.

DGX has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. Argus set a $120.00 price target on Quest Diagnostics and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, September 14th. Credit Suisse Group boosted their price target on Quest Diagnostics from $121.00 to $128.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday, September 24th. Bank of America initiated coverage on Quest Diagnostics in a report on Friday, October 19th. They issued a “buy” rating on the stock. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered their price target on Quest Diagnostics from $114.00 to $107.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, October 24th. Finally, Canaccord Genuity lowered their price target on Quest Diagnostics from $118.00 to $105.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, October 24th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $106.19.

Shares of DGX traded down $0.91 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $88.83. 1,997,000 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,034,537. The stock has a market capitalization of $12.21 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.45, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.87 and a beta of 0.89. Quest Diagnostics Inc has a 52-week low of $85.56 and a 52-week high of $116.49. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.63, a current ratio of 1.15 and a quick ratio of 1.09.

Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 23rd. The medical research company reported $1.68 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.68. The business had revenue of $1.89 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.95 billion. Quest Diagnostics had a return on equity of 15.71% and a net margin of 11.30%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.38 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts expect that Quest Diagnostics Inc will post 6.38 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, January 30th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, January 15th will be issued a dividend of $0.53 per share. This represents a $2.12 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.39%. This is a boost from Quest Diagnostics’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.50. The ex-dividend date is Monday, January 14th. Quest Diagnostics’s dividend payout ratio is 37.04%.

ILLEGAL ACTIVITY NOTICE: This article was originally posted by The Cerbat Gem and is owned by of The Cerbat Gem. If you are viewing this article on another site, it was illegally copied and republished in violation of U.S. & international copyright and trademark legislation. The correct version of this article can be viewed at https://www.thecerbatgem.com/2018/12/06/marshall-wace-north-america-l-p-sells-565264-shares-of-quest-diagnostics-inc-dgx.html.

Quest Diagnostics Profile

Quest Diagnostics Incorporated provides diagnostic testing information and services in the United States and internationally. The company's Diagnostic Information Services business segment develops and delivers diagnostic testing information and services, such as routine testing, non-routine and advanced clinical testing, gene-based and esoteric testing, anatomic pathology, and other diagnostic information services.

Further Reading: Outstanding Shares and The Effect on Share Price

Want to see what other hedge funds are holding DGX? Visit HoldingsChannel.com to get the latest 13F filings and insider trades for Quest Diagnostics Inc (NYSE:DGX).

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX)

Receive News & Ratings for Quest Diagnostics Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Quest Diagnostics and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.