Kentucky Retirement Systems Lowers Stake in Zoetis Inc (ZTS)
Kentucky Retirement Systems reduced its stake in shares of Zoetis Inc (NYSE:ZTS) by 49.4% in the 4th quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 20,899 shares of the company’s stock after selling 20,382 shares during the period. Kentucky Retirement Systems’ holdings in Zoetis were worth $1,788,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other large investors also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Whittier Trust Co. raised its holdings in shares of Zoetis by 3.2% during the fourth quarter. Whittier Trust Co. now owns 4,039 shares of the company’s stock worth $345,000 after purchasing an additional 124 shares during the last quarter. North Star Investment Management Corp. raised its holdings in shares of Zoetis by 0.6% during the fourth quarter. North Star Investment Management Corp. now owns 22,525 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,927,000 after purchasing an additional 125 shares during the last quarter. Sandy Spring Bank raised its holdings in shares of Zoetis by 0.4% during the fourth quarter. Sandy Spring Bank now owns 29,716 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,542,000 after purchasing an additional 125 shares during the last quarter. InterOcean Capital LLC raised its holdings in shares of Zoetis by 5.0% during the fourth quarter. InterOcean Capital LLC now owns 2,945 shares of the company’s stock worth $252,000 after purchasing an additional 139 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Harvest Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Zoetis by 8.0% during the fourth quarter. Harvest Management LLC now owns 2,700 shares of the company’s stock worth $231,000 after purchasing an additional 200 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 90.90% of the company’s stock.
Several brokerages recently issued reports on ZTS. UBS Group began coverage on shares of Zoetis in a report on Wednesday, March 20th. They set a “neutral” rating for the company. SunTrust Banks began coverage on shares of Zoetis in a report on Tuesday, March 19th. They issued a “hold” rating and a $100.00 price objective for the company. Stifel Nicolaus raised shares of Zoetis from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price objective for the company from $97.00 to $110.00 in a report on Monday, March 4th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Zoetis from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, February 16th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets lifted their price objective on shares of Zoetis from $93.00 to $101.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a report on Monday, February 25th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $98.93.
Zoetis (NYSE:ZTS) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, February 14th. The company reported $0.79 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.77 by $0.02. Zoetis had a net margin of 24.51% and a return on equity of 73.85%. The business had revenue of $1.56 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.53 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.69 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.1% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, equities research analysts expect that Zoetis Inc will post 3.46 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 3rd. Stockholders of record on Thursday, April 18th will be issued a $0.164 dividend. This represents a $0.66 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.66%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, April 17th. Zoetis’s payout ratio is 21.09%.
Zoetis announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share buyback program on Wednesday, December 12th that allows the company to buyback $2.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the company to reacquire up to 4.7% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
In other news, insider Catherine A. Knupp sold 32,767 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, March 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $95.80, for a total value of $3,139,078.60. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 82,820 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,934,156. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, insider Clinton A. Jr. Lewis sold 6,125 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, January 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.21, for a total transaction of $521,911.25. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 48,070 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,096,044.70. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 412,334 shares of company stock valued at $38,711,680. Company insiders own 0.35% of the company’s stock.
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Zoetis Inc discovers, develops, manufactures, and commercializes animal health medicines, vaccines, and diagnostic products in the United States and internationally. It commercializes products primarily across species, including livestock, such as cattle, swine, poultry, fish, and sheep; and companion animals comprising dogs, cats, and horses.
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