Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Neogen (NASDAQ:NEOG) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report released on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Neogen has been grappling with pricing pressure and supply challenges in the animal protein sector, majorly in China and Mexico. Tough competition also weighs on the stock. Escalating expenses put pressure on margins. Moreover, valuation looks stretched at this moment. On a positive note, Neogen continues to report robust revenue performance banking on balanced growth across all segments. The company is currently progressing well with the integration process related to several new acquisitions within its genomics business including recent purchase of laboratories in Brazil and Australia. Internationally, Neogen is expanding its business quite rapidly. The company witnessed growing revenues in Europe, Brazil, Mexico, China and India along with other geographies in the reported quarter. It has established a laboratory in Shanghai, China. Overall, year to date, shares of Neogen outperformed its industry.”

Several other research analysts have also commented on the stock. ValuEngine lowered shares of Neogen from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating in a report on Wednesday, September 26th. BidaskClub lowered shares of Neogen from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating in a report on Thursday, September 20th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $67.75.

Shares of NEOG stock opened at $61.51 on Wednesday. The firm has a market cap of $3.22 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 48.82 and a beta of 1.38. Neogen has a 1-year low of $54.09 and a 1-year high of $97.38.

Neogen (NASDAQ:NEOG) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, September 25th. The company reported $0.29 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.28 by $0.01. Neogen had a net margin of 16.35% and a return on equity of 12.06%. The company had revenue of $99.60 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $104.43 million. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.31 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Sell-side analysts predict that Neogen will post 1.24 earnings per share for the current year.

Neogen declared that its board has approved a stock buyback plan on Wednesday, October 10th that allows the company to repurchase 3,000,000 shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

In other news, Chairman James L. Herbert sold 2,748 shares of Neogen stock in a transaction dated Friday, November 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $60.51, for a total value of $166,281.48. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 742,576 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $44,933,273.76. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, Director James P. Tobin purchased 500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 26th. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $73.37 per share, with a total value of $36,685.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now directly owns 4,766 shares in the company, valued at approximately $349,681.42. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 72,851 shares of company stock valued at $4,482,628 over the last ninety days. Company insiders own 3.00% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of NEOG. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Neogen by 10.1% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 7,120,686 shares of the company’s stock valued at $571,008,000 after buying an additional 654,510 shares during the period. Conestoga Capital Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Neogen by 13.9% during the 3rd quarter. Conestoga Capital Advisors LLC now owns 1,440,469 shares of the company’s stock valued at $103,037,000 after purchasing an additional 175,313 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in Neogen by 3.1% during the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 5,020,145 shares of the company’s stock valued at $359,091,000 after purchasing an additional 149,536 shares during the period. Carnegie Capital Asset Management LLC boosted its stake in Neogen by 103.8% during the 3rd quarter. Carnegie Capital Asset Management LLC now owns 252,920 shares of the company’s stock valued at $16,026,000 after purchasing an additional 128,838 shares during the period. Finally, Man Group plc boosted its stake in Neogen by 81.0% during the 3rd quarter. Man Group plc now owns 142,696 shares of the company’s stock valued at $10,207,000 after purchasing an additional 63,864 shares during the period. 89.53% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Neogen Company Profile

Neogen Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, develops, manufactures, and markets various products for food and animal safety worldwide. It operates through two segments, Food Safety and Animal Safety. The Food Safety segment primarily offers diagnostic test kits and complementary to detect dangerous and/or unintended substances in human food and animal feed, such as foodborne pathogens, spoilage organisms, natural toxins, food allergens, genetic modifications, ruminant by-products, meat speciation, drug residues, pesticide residues, and general sanitation concerns; and AccuPoint Advanced rapid sanitation test for adenosine triphosphate, a chemical found in living cells.

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