Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund bought a new position in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America Holdings (NYSE:LH) during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm bought 5,658 shares of the medical research company’s stock, valued at approximately $957,000.

A number of other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in LH. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA acquired a new position in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America in the 3rd quarter valued at $26,344,000. Hexavest Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America during the 4th quarter valued at about $26,427,000. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. increased its stake in Laboratory Corp. of America by 3,092.8% in the fourth quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. now owns 130,586 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $22,091,000 after acquiring an additional 126,496 shares during the period. Teacher Retirement System of Texas increased its stake in Laboratory Corp. of America by 26.0% in the fourth quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 508,447 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $86,014,000 after acquiring an additional 105,000 shares during the period. Finally, California Public Employees Retirement System raised its position in Laboratory Corp. of America by 9.3% in the third quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 798,049 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $134,072,000 after purchasing an additional 67,897 shares in the last quarter. 90.74% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

LH has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Laboratory Corp. of America from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $186.00 price target for the company in a research note on Monday, January 13th. ValuEngine lowered Laboratory Corp. of America from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 3rd. Bank of America cut Laboratory Corp. of America from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating in a report on Friday, January 3rd. Canaccord Genuity reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $170.00 target price on shares of Laboratory Corp. of America in a report on Thursday, October 24th. Finally, UBS Group cut their target price on Laboratory Corp. of America from $204.00 to $200.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, October 21st. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $191.19.

NYSE:LH opened at $194.73 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $17.82 billion, a PE ratio of 25.62, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.81 and a beta of 1.07. Laboratory Corp. of America Holdings has a 12 month low of $140.53 and a 12 month high of $196.36. The company has a quick ratio of 1.08, a current ratio of 1.17 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.93. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $176.75 and its two-hundred day moving average price is $170.23.

Laboratory Corp. of America (NYSE:LH) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 13th. The medical research company reported $2.86 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.80 by $0.06. The firm had revenue of $3 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.92 billion. Laboratory Corp. of America had a net margin of 6.63% and a return on equity of 15.33%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 7.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $2.52 earnings per share. On average, research analysts expect that Laboratory Corp. of America Holdings will post 11.25 EPS for the current fiscal year.

About Laboratory Corp. of America

Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings operates as an independent clinical laboratory company worldwide. It operates in two segments, LabCorp Diagnostics (LCD) and Covance Drug Development. It offers various clinical laboratory tests, such as blood chemistry analyses, urinalyses, blood cell counts, thyroid tests, Pap tests, hemoglobin A1C and vitamin D products, prostate-specific antigens, tests for sexually-transmitted diseases, hepatitis C tests, microbiology cultures and procedures, and alcohol and other substance-abuse tests.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Laboratory Corp. of America (NYSE:LH)

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