BidaskClub downgraded shares of Exponent (NASDAQ:EXPO) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report issued on Tuesday morning, BidAskClub reports.

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently commented on EXPO. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Exponent from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating and set a $76.00 target price for the company in a research report on Monday, July 22nd. SunTrust Banks set a $70.00 target price on shares of Exponent and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Friday, July 19th. Cantor Fitzgerald increased their target price on shares of Exponent from $64.00 to $73.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a research report on Friday, July 19th. DA Davidson initiated coverage on shares of Exponent in a research report on Wednesday, August 28th. They set a neutral rating for the company. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Exponent from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, September 4th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, two have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $73.00.

Shares of EXPO traded up $0.34 during mid-day trading on Tuesday, hitting $70.25. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 4,932 shares, compared to its average volume of 188,160. The company’s 50-day moving average is $69.57 and its 200-day moving average is $60.56. Exponent has a 52-week low of $44.44 and a 52-week high of $72.15. The firm has a market capitalization of $3.57 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 56.18 and a beta of 0.43. The company has a current ratio of 3.60, a quick ratio of 3.60 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.05.

Exponent (NASDAQ:EXPO) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, July 18th. The business services provider reported $0.39 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.33 by $0.06. Exponent had a net margin of 19.64% and a return on equity of 23.44%. The company had revenue of $106.50 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $95.77 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.34 earnings per share. Exponent’s revenue for the quarter was up 11.4% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that Exponent will post 1.47 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 20th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 6th will be paid a dividend of $0.16 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 5th. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.91%. Exponent’s payout ratio is 51.20%.

In other news, CFO Richard L. Schlenker, Jr. sold 75,530 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.26, for a total value of $5,306,737.80. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 251,805 shares in the company, valued at $17,691,819.30. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, insider John Pye sold 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, August 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.31, for a total transaction of $210,930.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 25,747 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,810,271.57. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 102,773 shares of company stock worth $7,227,536 in the last 90 days. 2.30% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in EXPO. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC increased its stake in shares of Exponent by 787.0% in the second quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 612 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $36,000 after acquiring an additional 543 shares during the period. Bremer Bank National Association acquired a new stake in shares of Exponent in the first quarter worth $55,000. NN Investment Partners Holdings N.V. acquired a new stake in shares of Exponent in the second quarter worth $91,000. Atria Investments LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Exponent in the second quarter worth $115,000. Finally, Cim LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Exponent in the second quarter worth $200,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 88.11% of the company’s stock.

Exponent Company Profile

Exponent, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a science and engineering consulting company worldwide. Its services include analysis of product development, product recall, regulatory compliance, and the discovery of potential problems related to products, people, property, and impending litigation.

Featured Story: How to invest in blue-chip stocks

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