Spark Investment Management LLC increased its stake in ABAXIS, Inc. (NASDAQ:ABAX) by 62.1% during the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 29,500 shares of the medical research company’s stock after buying an additional 11,300 shares during the period. Spark Investment Management LLC owned 0.13% of ABAXIS worth $1,564,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other large investors also recently made changes to their positions in ABAX. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 8.5% in the first quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 23,962 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $1,162,000 after buying an additional 1,885 shares during the last quarter. Karp Capital Management Corp bought a new stake in shares of ABAXIS during the first quarter valued at about $275,000. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. increased its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 8.7% in the first quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 4,129 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $200,000 after buying an additional 330 shares during the last quarter. Comerica Bank increased its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 3.9% in the first quarter. Comerica Bank now owns 25,718 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $1,269,000 after buying an additional 973 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 3.2% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 326,957 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $15,858,000 after buying an additional 10,028 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 98.77% of the company’s stock.

Shares of ABAXIS, Inc. (ABAX) opened at 46.63 on Wednesday. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $51.14 and its 200-day moving average is $49.46. The firm has a market cap of $1.05 billion, a P/E ratio of 32.93 and a beta of 0.81. ABAXIS, Inc. has a 1-year low of $44.12 and a 1-year high of $55.95.

ABAXIS (NASDAQ:ABAX) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 27th. The medical research company reported $0.28 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.33 by $0.05. ABAXIS had a net margin of 14.12% and a return on equity of 10.85%. The firm had revenue of $58.26 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $60.37 million. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.30 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 1.0% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts anticipate that ABAXIS, Inc. will post $1.13 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 1st will be issued a $0.14 dividend. This represents a $0.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.20%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 30th. ABAXIS’s dividend payout ratio is 39.72%.

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Several brokerages have recently issued reports on ABAX. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of ABAXIS from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 28th. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $48.00 price target on shares of ABAXIS in a research note on Friday, July 14th. Aegis started coverage on shares of ABAXIS in a research note on Friday, June 9th. They set a “hold” rating and a $56.50 price target on the stock. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded shares of ABAXIS from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 3rd. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $47.88.

In other ABAXIS news, insider Achim Henkel sold 650 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, May 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.87, for a total value of $31,765.50. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 58,950 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,880,886.50. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Corporate insiders own 4.10% of the company’s stock.

About ABAXIS

Abaxis, Inc is a developer, manufacturer and marketer of portable blood analysis systems that are used in medical specialties in human or veterinary patient care to provide clinicians with blood constituent measurements. The Company markets and sells its products around the world through independent distributors and direct sales force.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for ABAXIS (NASDAQ:ABAX)

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