Traders sold shares of Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) on strength during trading on Wednesday. $86.50 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $177.29 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $90.79 million out of the stock. Of all equities tracked, Abbott Laboratories had the 11th highest net out-flow for the day. Abbott Laboratories traded up $0.64 for the day and closed at $72.84

Several equities research analysts recently commented on the company. Royal Bank of Canada reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $70.00 price objective on shares of Abbott Laboratories in a report on Thursday, July 19th. Stifel Nicolaus lifted their price objective on Abbott Laboratories from $71.00 to $72.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, July 19th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Abbott Laboratories from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, August 6th. Sanford C. Bernstein assumed coverage on Abbott Laboratories in a report on Wednesday, June 27th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $73.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Raymond James lifted their price objective on Abbott Laboratories from $72.00 to $77.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seventeen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $71.11.

The company has a market cap of $125.33 billion, a PE ratio of 29.05, a PEG ratio of 2.00 and a beta of 1.48. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.64, a current ratio of 1.58 and a quick ratio of 1.16.

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 18th. The healthcare product maker reported $0.73 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.71 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $7.77 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $7.71 billion. Abbott Laboratories had a return on equity of 15.30% and a net margin of 3.13%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 17.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.62 EPS. equities analysts forecast that Abbott Laboratories will post 2.88 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, November 15th. Shareholders of record on Monday, October 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.28 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, October 12th. This represents a $1.12 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.54%. Abbott Laboratories’s dividend payout ratio is currently 44.80%.

In other news, SVP Jaime Contreras sold 64,268 shares of Abbott Laboratories stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $66.84, for a total transaction of $4,295,673.12. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 125,471 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $8,386,481.64. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Brian J. Blaser sold 58,200 shares of Abbott Laboratories stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $68.79, for a total value of $4,003,578.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 184,918 shares in the company, valued at $12,720,509.22. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 148,589 shares of company stock worth $9,998,590. Insiders own 0.74% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. City Holding Co. lifted its holdings in Abbott Laboratories by 1.6% in the 2nd quarter. City Holding Co. now owns 50,654 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock worth $3,089,000 after purchasing an additional 782 shares in the last quarter. Moody National Bank Trust Division lifted its holdings in Abbott Laboratories by 7.3% in the 2nd quarter. Moody National Bank Trust Division now owns 11,757 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock worth $717,000 after purchasing an additional 795 shares in the last quarter. Sullivan Bruyette Speros & Blaney LLC raised its holdings in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 4.2% during the 2nd quarter. Sullivan Bruyette Speros & Blaney LLC now owns 19,760 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock worth $1,205,000 after acquiring an additional 796 shares in the last quarter. M Holdings Securities Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 7.4% during the 2nd quarter. M Holdings Securities Inc. now owns 11,538 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock worth $704,000 after acquiring an additional 796 shares in the last quarter. Finally, North Star Asset Management Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Abbott Laboratories by 0.3% during the 2nd quarter. North Star Asset Management Inc. now owns 275,593 shares of the healthcare product maker’s stock worth $16,808,000 after acquiring an additional 828 shares in the last quarter. 72.12% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT)

Abbott Laboratories discovers, develops, manufactures, and sells health care products worldwide. The company's Established Pharmaceutical Products segment offers branded generic pharmaceuticals for the treatment of pancreatic exocrine insufficiency; irritable bowel syndrome or biliary spasm; intrahepatic cholestasis or depressive symptoms; gynecological disorders; hormone replacement therapy; dyslipidemia; hypertension; hypothyroidism; Ménière's disease and vestibular vertigo; pain, fever, and inflammation; migraines; and anti-infective clarithromycin, as well as provides influenza vaccine and products that regulate physiological rhythm of the colon.

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