Icon PLC (NASDAQ:ICLR) saw strong trading volume on Thursday . 1,090,263 shares changed hands during trading, an increase of 73% from the previous session’s volume of 629,991 shares.The stock last traded at $70.81 and had previously closed at $71.10.

Several equities analysts have recently weighed in on the company. Jefferies Group downgraded Icon PLC from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and decreased their target price for the company from $80.00 to $78.00 in a research report on Friday, June 3rd. Avondale Partners cut Icon PLC from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and cut their price target for the company from $70.00 to $59.00 in a report on Wednesday, June 8th. SunTrust Banks Inc. reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Icon PLC in a report on Wednesday, April 27th. Zacks Investment Research cut Icon PLC from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 27th. Finally, Robert W. Baird reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and issued a $83.00 price target on shares of Icon PLC in a report on Monday, June 27th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Icon PLC has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $77.43.

The firm has a market capitalization of $3.91 billion and a P/E ratio of 16.94. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $67.88 and a 200-day moving average of $69.80.

Icon PLC (NASDAQ:ICLR) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, April 26th. The company reported $1.12 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.11 by $0.01. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.86 EPS. The company earned $400.50 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $414.35 million. Icon PLC’s quarterly revenue was up 3.2% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts expect that Icon PLC will post $4.71 EPS for the current year.

A number of large investors recently bought and sold shares of ICLR. Boston Partners raised its position in shares of Icon PLC by 6.2% in the fourth quarter. Boston Partners now owns 3,162,082 shares of the company’s stock worth $245,694,000 after buying an additional 185,762 shares in the last quarter. WCM Investment Management CA raised its position in shares of Icon PLC by 7.1% in the fourth quarter. WCM Investment Management CA now owns 4,490,038 shares of the company’s stock worth $348,876,000 after buying an additional 297,587 shares in the last quarter. Sawtooth Asset Management Inc. raised its position in shares of Icon PLC by 1,763.3% in the fourth quarter. Sawtooth Asset Management Inc. now owns 26,384 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,050,000 after buying an additional 24,968 shares in the last quarter. Financial Counselors Inc. raised its position in shares of Icon PLC by 2.6% in the fourth quarter. Financial Counselors Inc. now owns 29,978 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,329,000 after buying an additional 753 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Globeflex Capital L P raised its position in shares of Icon PLC by 10.4% in the fourth quarter. Globeflex Capital L P now owns 268,600 shares of the company’s stock worth $20,870,000 after buying an additional 25,200 shares in the last quarter.

ICON public limited company is a contract research organization (CRO), which is engaged in providing outsourced development services to the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries. The Company is engaged in the strategic development, management and analysis of programs that support the various stages of the clinical development process, from compound selection to Phase I-IV clinical studies.

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