Baxter International (NYSE:BAX) had its price target raised by Wells Fargo & Co from $72.00 to $76.00 in a report published on Tuesday. The firm currently has an outperform rating on the medical instruments supplier’s stock.

Several other equities research analysts have also commented on BAX. Zacks Investment Research restated a hold rating and issued a $71.00 price objective on shares of Baxter International in a research report on Monday, November 12th. Piper Jaffray Companies lowered their price objective on Baxter International from $83.00 to $72.00 and set an overweight rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, November 1st. BMO Capital Markets lowered their price objective on Baxter International from $86.00 to $76.00 and set an outperform rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, November 1st. ValuEngine upgraded Baxter International from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, November 15th. Finally, Citigroup lowered their price objective on Baxter International from $76.00 to $69.00 and set a neutral rating on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, November 13th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $74.41.

Baxter International stock opened at $65.02 on Tuesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38, a quick ratio of 1.96 and a current ratio of 2.60. Baxter International has a 12 month low of $61.05 and a 12 month high of $78.38. The company has a market capitalization of $35.54 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 26.22, a P/E/G ratio of 1.80 and a beta of 1.04.

Baxter International (NYSE:BAX) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 31st. The medical instruments supplier reported $0.80 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.74 by $0.06. Baxter International had a return on equity of 17.67% and a net margin of 10.90%. The business had revenue of $2.77 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.79 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.64 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 2.2% compared to the same quarter last year. Sell-side analysts expect that Baxter International will post 3 earnings per share for the current year.

Baxter International declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share repurchase plan on Tuesday, November 13th that allows the company to buyback $2.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the medical instruments supplier to buy up to 6.1% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are often a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, January 2nd. Stockholders of record on Monday, December 3rd will be given a dividend of $0.19 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, November 30th. This represents a $0.76 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.17%. Baxter International’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 30.65%.

In other Baxter International news, Director Carole J. Shapazian sold 11,749 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, December 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $68.48, for a total value of $804,571.52. Following the transaction, the director now owns 15,237 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,043,429.76. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Third Point Llc sold 8,000,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, December 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $68.62, for a total value of $548,960,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 8,029,396 shares of company stock worth $551,128,155 in the last quarter. Insiders own 0.05% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its holdings in Baxter International by 1.3% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 36,398,931 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock valued at $2,805,993,000 after purchasing an additional 470,198 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC lifted its holdings in Baxter International by 2.5% in the 3rd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 29,356,040 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock valued at $2,263,057,000 after purchasing an additional 719,013 shares in the last quarter. Morgan Stanley lifted its holdings in Baxter International by 267.9% in the 3rd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 10,570,520 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock valued at $814,880,000 after purchasing an additional 7,697,267 shares in the last quarter. Standard Life Aberdeen plc lifted its holdings in Baxter International by 121.2% in the 3rd quarter. Standard Life Aberdeen plc now owns 5,743,738 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock valued at $442,813,000 after purchasing an additional 3,146,868 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Janus Henderson Group PLC increased its stake in shares of Baxter International by 7.6% in the 3rd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 4,321,125 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $333,116,000 after acquiring an additional 306,714 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 83.40% of the company’s stock.

Baxter International Company Profile

Baxter International Inc provides a portfolio of healthcare products. The company operates through North and South America; Europe, Middle East and Africa; and Asia-Pacific segments. It offers peritoneal dialysis and hemodialysis, and additional dialysis therapies and services; renal replacement therapies and other organ support therapies focused in the intensive care unit; sterile intravenous (IV) solutions, IV therapies, infusion pumps, administration sets, and drug reconstitution devices; and parenteral nutrition therapies.

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Analyst Recommendations for Baxter International (NYSE:BAX)

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