Agilent Technologies Inc (NYSE:A) CEO Michael R. Mcmullen sold 15,923 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $73.20, for a total value of $1,165,563.60. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 492,546 shares in the company, valued at approximately $36,054,367.20. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink.

A stock opened at $71.91 on Friday. The company has a market capitalization of $23.24 billion, a P/E ratio of 25.77, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.04 and a beta of 1.36. Agilent Technologies Inc has a 12-month low of $60.42 and a 12-month high of $75.11. The company has a current ratio of 3.29, a quick ratio of 2.74 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.39.

Agilent Technologies (NYSE:A) last released its quarterly earnings data on Monday, November 19th. The medical research company reported $0.81 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.74 by $0.07. The business had revenue of $1.29 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.26 billion. Agilent Technologies had a return on equity of 19.84% and a net margin of 6.43%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 8.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.67 EPS. As a group, analysts forecast that Agilent Technologies Inc will post 3.04 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, January 23rd. Investors of record on Monday, December 31st will be given a $0.164 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, December 28th. This is a boost from Agilent Technologies’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.15. This represents a $0.66 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.91%. Agilent Technologies’s dividend payout ratio is 21.51%.

Agilent Technologies declared that its board has initiated a stock repurchase plan on Monday, November 19th that allows the company to repurchase $1.75 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the medical research company to repurchase up to 8.8% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

Several research firms recently weighed in on A. Deutsche Bank upped their price target on Agilent Technologies from $77.00 to $80.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 15th. ValuEngine downgraded Agilent Technologies from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 23rd. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Agilent Technologies from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 16th. Morgan Stanley upped their price target on Agilent Technologies from $86.00 to $89.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, November 20th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group upgraded Agilent Technologies from a “buy” rating to a “conviction-buy” rating in a research note on Monday, September 17th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $78.75.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its position in Agilent Technologies by 0.8% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 24,155,483 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $1,703,929,000 after acquiring an additional 194,607 shares in the last quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. lifted its position in Agilent Technologies by 12.5% in the 3rd quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 8,590,725 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $605,989,000 after acquiring an additional 954,104 shares in the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. lifted its position in Agilent Technologies by 16.9% in the 3rd quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 5,359,933 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $378,090,000 after acquiring an additional 774,771 shares in the last quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Agilent Technologies by 1.2% in the 3rd quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 3,222,517 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $227,316,000 after acquiring an additional 37,709 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company MN lifted its position in Agilent Technologies by 6.6% in the 2nd quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 2,984,214 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $184,544,000 after acquiring an additional 183,728 shares in the last quarter.

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About Agilent Technologies

Agilent Technologies, Inc provides application focused solutions to the life sciences, diagnostics, and applied chemical markets worldwide. It operates in three segments: Life Sciences and Applied Markets, Diagnostics and Genomics, and Agilent CrossLab. The Life Sciences and Applied Markets segment offers liquid chromatography systems and components; liquid chromatography mass spectrometry systems; gas chromatography systems and components; gas chromatography mass spectrometry systems; inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry instruments; atomic absorption instruments; microwave plasma-atomic emission spectrometry instruments; inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry instruments; raman spectroscopy; microfluidics based automated electrophoresis products; cell analysis plate based assays; laboratory software and informatics systems; laboratory automation; dissolution testing; vacuum pumps; and measurement technologies.

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