Wall Street brokerages forecast that Cognex Co. (NASDAQ:CGNX) will post $178.87 million in sales for the current fiscal quarter, according to Zacks. Four analysts have provided estimates for Cognex’s earnings. The lowest sales estimate is $176.30 million and the highest is $182.17 million. Cognex posted sales of $129.32 million during the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year over year growth rate of 38.3%. The firm is scheduled to issue its next earnings results on Thursday, February 15th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Cognex will report full-year sales of $178.87 million for the current year, with estimates ranging from $743.90 million to $749.76 million. For the next financial year, analysts anticipate that the firm will report sales of $845.21 million per share, with estimates ranging from $800.82 million to $897.56 million. Zacks Investment Research’s sales averages are an average based on a survey of sell-side analysts that that provide coverage for Cognex.

Cognex (NASDAQ:CGNX) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, October 30th. The scientific and technical instruments company reported $0.57 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.52 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $259.74 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $255.95 million. Cognex had a return on equity of 23.31% and a net margin of 34.77%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 75.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.31 EPS.

CGNX has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut Cognex from a “neutral” rating to an “underweight” rating and set a $62.50 price objective for the company. in a research report on Wednesday, November 8th. Canaccord Genuity raised their price objective on Cognex from $47.50 to $60.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 31st. Zacks Investment Research cut Cognex from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 3rd. ValuEngine cut Cognex from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 7th. Finally, BidaskClub cut Cognex from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 7th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company. Cognex currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $60.17.

In other Cognex news, CEO Robert Willett sold 100,000 shares of Cognex stock in a transaction dated Thursday, November 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $127.19, for a total transaction of $12,719,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 100,000 shares in the company, valued at approximately $12,719,000. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, insider John J. Curran sold 12,500 shares of Cognex stock in a transaction dated Friday, November 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $132.60, for a total value of $1,657,500.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 6,250 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $828,750. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 143,750 shares of company stock valued at $18,540,975 in the last quarter. Company insiders own 5.60% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in CGNX. Huntington National Bank increased its stake in shares of Cognex by 67.3% in the 3rd quarter. Huntington National Bank now owns 1,367 shares of the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock valued at $151,000 after purchasing an additional 550 shares in the last quarter. Coldstream Capital Management Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Cognex in the 3rd quarter valued at about $203,000. Empirical Finance LLC purchased a new position in shares of Cognex in the 3rd quarter valued at about $209,000. Wealthsource Partners LLC purchased a new position in shares of Cognex in the 3rd quarter valued at about $212,000. Finally, Private Advisor Group LLC purchased a new position in shares of Cognex in the 3rd quarter valued at about $214,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 42.10% of the company’s stock.

Cognex (NASDAQ:CGNX) traded up $1.40 during trading on Monday, hitting $67.78. The stock had a trading volume of 1,805,276 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,646,000. The firm has a market cap of $11,740.00, a PE ratio of 49.84 and a beta of 1.50. Cognex has a 52-week low of $31.51 and a 52-week high of $72.99.

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About Cognex

Cognex Corporation (Cognex) is a provider of machine vision products that capture and analyze visual information in order to automate tasks, primarily in manufacturing processes, where vision is required. The Company operates through the machine vision technology segment. The Company’s machine vision products are used to automate the manufacture and tracking of discrete items, such as mobile phones, aspirin bottles and automobile tires, by locating, identifying, inspecting and measuring them during the manufacturing or distribution process.

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