ABAXIS, Inc. (NASDAQ:ABAX) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued on Monday, July 31st.

According to Zacks, “Abaxis started off fiscal 2018 on a disappointing note with first quarter earnings and revenues both missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate. However, a year-over-year increase in revenues buoys optimism. We are looking forward to improved consumable revenues that boosted veterinary sales performance at Abaxis during the quarter. Meanwhile, we are encouraged to note that the company is emphasizing on new product innovations through research and development. Abaxis plans additional product launches in fiscal 2018, including the VetScan FUSE connectivity system.  On the flip side, the company's valuation remains stretched. Challenges like competitive bidding and foreign exchange headwind continue to hurt the stock. Rising operating expenses and a weak operating margin are other major woes for the company. Overall, in the last three months, Abaxis has been trading below the broader industry.”

A number of other equities analysts also recently weighed in on the company. Stifel Nicolaus reissued a “hold” rating and set a $48.00 price target on shares of ABAXIS in a research report on Friday, July 14th. Aegis started coverage on ABAXIS in a research report on Friday, June 9th. They set a “hold” rating and a $56.50 price target on the stock. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $47.88.

Shares of ABAXIS (ABAX) traded up 1.88% on Monday, reaching $46.65. The company had a trading volume of 136,857 shares. ABAXIS has a 12 month low of $44.12 and a 12 month high of $55.95. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.05 billion, a PE ratio of 32.94 and a beta of 0.81. The company’s 50-day moving average is $50.43 and its 200 day moving average is $49.39.

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

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In other news, insider Achim Henkel sold 650 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred 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 owns 58,950 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,880,886.50. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. 4.10% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Kayne Anderson Rudnick Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 5.8% in the second quarter. Kayne Anderson Rudnick Investment Management LLC now owns 3,132,117 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $166,065,000 after buying an additional 171,541 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 132,779.9% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,689,490 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $130,442,000 after buying an additional 2,687,466 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 0.9% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,963,755 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $104,119,000 after buying an additional 16,676 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 1.7% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 672,229 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $35,642,000 after buying an additional 10,991 shares during the period. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company MN boosted its stake in shares of ABAXIS by 6.5% in the first quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 632,647 shares of the medical research company’s stock valued at $30,683,000 after buying an additional 38,862 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 98.77% 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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Analyst Recommendations for ABAXIS (NASDAQ:ABAX)

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