Baxter International (NYSE:BAX) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Baxter continues to benefit from its core Advanced Surgery, Renal Care and Acute Therapies units. Baxter’s surgical portfolio is expected to rake in huge profits on the back of products like FLOSEAL Hemostatic Matrix, TISSEEL Fibrin Sealant among others. The company has received approval for faster preparation of Floseal Hemostatic Matrix, announced the availability of a NantHealth digital health solution and planned U.S. launch of Clinolipid during the first quarter. Based on the strong first quarter performance, Baxter raised 2019 earnings outlook. Baxter ended the first quarter of 2019 on a solid note, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate on both counts. Driven by these factors, Baxter outperformed its industry in a year’s time. Meanwhile, Baxter’s Medication Delivery and Clinical Nutrition units have been sluggish. Cutthroat competition in the MedTech markets is indicative of dull prospects.”

A number of other research analysts also recently commented on the company. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased their price objective on Baxter International from $80.00 to $88.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Monday, May 13th. Cowen set a $75.00 price objective on Baxter International and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, April 22nd. Barclays increased their price objective on Baxter International from $72.00 to $75.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a report on Monday, April 15th. Wells Fargo & Co increased their price objective on Baxter International from $80.00 to $89.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 3rd. Finally, Morgan Stanley increased their price objective on Baxter International from $80.00 to $83.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Tuesday, March 5th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and thirteen have issued a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $78.63.

NYSE BAX traded up $0.11 during trading hours on Tuesday, hitting $75.43. 1,737,249 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 3,023,255. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.50, a current ratio of 1.83 and a quick ratio of 1.30. Baxter International has a 52-week low of $61.05 and a 52-week high of $82.25. The company has a market cap of $38.76 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.73, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.79 and a beta of 0.96.

Baxter International (NYSE:BAX) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 25th. The medical instruments supplier reported $0.76 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.68 by $0.08. Baxter International had a return on equity of 20.04% and a net margin of 14.27%. The business had revenue of $2.63 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.61 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.70 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 1.7% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts anticipate that Baxter International will post 3.32 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, insider Third Point Llc sold 5,000,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $76.37, for a total transaction of $381,850,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, Director Thomas T. Stallkamp sold 1,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $76.20, for a total value of $76,200.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 5,057,187 shares of company stock worth $386,297,619 in the last 90 days. 0.70% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in BAX. C J Advisory Inc acquired a new position in shares of Baxter International in the first quarter worth about $28,000. Gantzert Investment Co. LLC ADV acquired a new position in Baxter International in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $25,000. Parisi Gray Wealth Management acquired a new position in Baxter International in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $26,000. Sontag Advisory LLC acquired a new position in Baxter International in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $30,000. Finally, Baldwin Brothers Inc. MA lifted its holdings in Baxter International by 904.0% in the fourth quarter. Baldwin Brothers Inc. MA now owns 502 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock valued at $33,000 after acquiring an additional 452 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 86.12% of the company’s stock.

Baxter International Company Profile

Baxter International Inc, through its subsidiaries, develops and provides a portfolio of healthcare products. The company operates through North and South America; Europe, Middle East and Africa; and Asia-Pacific segments. The company 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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