Bank of America began coverage on shares of Laboratory Corp. of America (NYSE:LH) in a research report sent to investors on Friday, MarketBeat Ratings reports. The firm issued a buy rating on the medical research company’s stock.

LH has been the topic of several other research reports. Deutsche Bank cut Laboratory Corp. of America from a buy rating to a hold rating and set a $172.00 price target on the stock. in a report on Wednesday, June 27th. Credit Suisse Group decreased their price target on Laboratory Corp. of America from $197.00 to $195.00 and set an outperform rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, September 4th. SunTrust Banks reiterated a buy rating and issued a $220.00 price target on shares of Laboratory Corp. of America in a report on Friday, July 20th. Craig Hallum decreased their price target on Laboratory Corp. of America from $201.00 to $193.00 and set a buy rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, October 3rd. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Laboratory Corp. of America from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Thursday, October 4th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $197.44.

Shares of NYSE:LH traded up $0.20 during midday trading on Friday, reaching $172.60. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,188,489 shares, compared to its average volume of 662,744. Laboratory Corp. of America has a fifty-two week low of $147.70 and a fifty-two week high of $190.35. The firm has a market cap of $17.57 billion, a PE ratio of 17.98, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.73 and a beta of 0.97. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.86, a quick ratio of 1.32 and a current ratio of 1.42.

Laboratory Corp. of America (NYSE:LH) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, July 25th. The medical research company reported $2.98 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.92 by $0.06. Laboratory Corp. of America had a return on equity of 16.38% and a net margin of 11.59%. The company had revenue of $2.87 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.85 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $2.47 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 13.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts anticipate that Laboratory Corp. of America will post 11.52 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. SPC Financial Inc. bought a new position in Laboratory Corp. of America during the second quarter worth about $455,000. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company boosted its holdings in Laboratory Corp. of America by 5.7% during the first quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 110,873 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $17,933,000 after buying an additional 5,964 shares during the last quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. raised its position in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America by 0.8% during the second quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 389,086 shares of the medical research company’s stock worth $69,853,000 after purchasing an additional 3,039 shares during the period. Homrich & Berg acquired a new stake in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America during the second quarter worth about $245,000. Finally, Private Advisor Group LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Laboratory Corp. of America during the second quarter worth about $656,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 92.18% of the company’s stock.

Laboratory Corp. of America Company Profile

Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings operates as an independent clinical laboratory company worldwide. It operates through two segments, LabCorp Diagnostics and Covance Drug Development. It offers a range of clinical laboratory tests, such as blood chemistry analyses, urinalyses, blood cell counts, thyroid tests, Pap tests, hemoglobin A1C, prostate-specific antigen, tests for sexually-transmitted diseases, hepatitis C tests, vitamin D, microbiology cultures and procedures, and alcohol and other substance-abuse tests that are used by hospitals, physicians and other healthcare providers and commercial clients to assist in the diagnosis, monitoring and treatment of diseases and medical conditions through the examination of substances in blood, tissues, and other specimens.

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Analyst Recommendations for Laboratory Corp. of America (NYSE:LH)

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