Willis Investment Counsel lowered its stake in Quest Diagnostics Inc (NYSE:DGX) by 2.9% in the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 27,200 shares of the medical research company’s stock after selling 800 shares during the quarter. Willis Investment Counsel’s holdings in Quest Diagnostics were worth $2,547,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of the company. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 3.9% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 14,029,322 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $1,559,500,000 after acquiring an additional 525,200 shares during the last quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. raised its holdings in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 156.0% during the 3rd quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 2,683,901 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $251,320,000 after buying an additional 1,635,700 shares in the last quarter. Investec Asset Management LTD raised its holdings in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 9.4% during the 2nd quarter. Investec Asset Management LTD now owns 2,178,678 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $242,182,000 after buying an additional 186,477 shares in the last quarter. AJO LP raised its holdings in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 137.9% during the 2nd quarter. AJO LP now owns 2,134,245 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $237,243,000 after buying an additional 1,237,021 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Quest Diagnostics by 21.7% during the 3rd quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 1,926,757 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $180,422,000 after buying an additional 343,399 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 89.20% of the company’s stock.

Quest Diagnostics Inc (NYSE DGX) opened at $97.33 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.78, a quick ratio of 1.37 and a current ratio of 1.47. Quest Diagnostics Inc has a 12 month low of $86.89 and a 12 month high of $112.96. The stock has a market capitalization of $12,723.55, a P/E ratio of 16.73, a PEG ratio of 1.95 and a beta of 0.59.

Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The medical research company reported $1.39 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.35 by $0.04. Quest Diagnostics had a return on equity of 15.53% and a net margin of 8.82%. The firm had revenue of $1.93 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.92 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.37 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 2.4% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts anticipate that Quest Diagnostics Inc will post 5.65 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, January 24th. Investors of record on Tuesday, January 9th will be given a dividend of $0.45 per share. This represents a $1.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.85%. Quest Diagnostics’s dividend payout ratio is presently 37.74%.

In related news, Director Daniel Stanzione sold 3,803 shares of Quest Diagnostics stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, September 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $108.01, for a total transaction of $410,762.03. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 35,359 shares in the company, valued at $3,819,125.59. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Chairman Stephen H. Rusckowski sold 2,525 shares of Quest Diagnostics stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, September 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $108.03, for a total value of $272,775.75. Following the sale, the chairman now owns 168,413 shares in the company, valued at $18,193,656.39. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 160,396 shares of company stock worth $17,343,852 over the last 90 days. 1.75% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of equities analysts recently weighed in on the company. Zacks Investment Research raised Quest Diagnostics from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $121.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Wednesday, August 2nd. ValuEngine raised Quest Diagnostics from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, September 1st. Canaccord Genuity reissued a “buy” rating and set a $118.00 price objective on shares of Quest Diagnostics in a report on Wednesday, September 13th. BidaskClub raised Quest Diagnostics from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 15th. Finally, Morgan Stanley raised their price objective on Quest Diagnostics from $87.00 to $92.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a report on Thursday, August 10th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Quest Diagnostics has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $106.28.

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About Quest Diagnostics

Quest Diagnostics Incorporated is a provider of diagnostic information services. The Company operates through two businesses: Diagnostic Information Services and Diagnostic Solutions. The Diagnostic Information Services business develops and delivers diagnostic testing information and services, providing insights that empower and enable a range of customers, including patients, clinicians, hospitals, integrated delivery networks (IDNs), health plans, employers and accountable care organizations (ACOs).

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

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