AstraZeneca PLC (NYSE:AZN) receieved a new analyst call from Exane BNP Paribas, which initiated the stock at Outperform on February 05. Analysts at Shore Capital, shed their negative views on January 25 by lifting it fromHold to Buy. Analysts at Jefferies, made their first call about the stock on December 11, recommending it is Hold.
AstraZeneca PLC (AZN) grew as high as $37.17 on Wednesday before closing at $36.58. The -1.67 percent plunge dragged its market cap to $92.69B. The shares went down as low as $36.56 before recovering. Trading activity significantly weakened as the volume at ready counter decreased to 4,387,553 shares versus 4,624,320 in average daily trading volume over the past 20 days. So far this year, the volume has averaged about 5,169,660 shares. The stock is now 11.9% above against its bear-market low of $32.69 on March 01, 2018. It has retreated -14.22% since it’s 52-week high of $41.78 reached in November. Now the market price is up 7.3% on the year and down -3.69% YTD.
AZN’s 50 day simple moving average (SMA 50) price is $37.47 and its 200-day simple moving average (SMA 200) price is $37.69. The company’s stock currently has a total float of 2.52B shares. Its weekly volatility is hovering around 1.18% and felt 1.17% volatility in price over a month. On the upside, the share price will test short term resistance at around $36.98. On a downside, the stock is likely to find some support, which begins at $36.37. The failure to get near-term support could push it to $36.16.
Separately, it has been reported that multiple insider activity took place at AstraZeneca PLC (AZN). 10% Owner Astrazeneca Plc sold 2,000,000 shares for $4,250,000 in transaction occurred on 2014/11/12. After making this transaction, the 10% Owner owns a direct stake of 34,000,000 shares, worth $155,000,000, as per the last closing price.
Wall Street’s most bullish AstraZeneca PLC (NYSE:AZN) analysts are predicting the share price to blow past $54.88 per share during the next 12 months. The current median share price forecast by them is $42.39, suggesting that the stock could increase 15.88% in that time frame. The average price target of $41.96 calls for a nearly 14.71% increase in the stock price.
When looking at valuations, AstraZeneca PLC (AZN) has a pricey P/E of 37.87x as compared to industry average of 32.22x. Moreover, it trades for 22.25 times the next 12 months of expected earnings. Also, it is trading at rather expensive levels at just over 7.77x price/book and 4.32x price/sales. Compared to others, AstraZeneca PLC is in a different league with regards to profitability, having net margins of 11.3%. To put some perspective around this, the industry’s average net margin is 6.09%. AZN’s ROE is 18.5%, which is also considerably better than the industry’s ROE of 14.19%. It’s also not liquid in the near term, with a current ratio of 0.9. The stock has a debt/capital of 1.75.
Shares of AstraZeneca PLC (AZN) have dropped -5.1% since the company’s last earnings report. Over the past 12 fiscal quarters, AstraZeneca PLC (NYSE:AZN) has topped consensus earnings estimates in 12 quarters (100%), missed earnings in 0 quarters (0%), whereas at 0 occasion EPS met analyst expectations. AZN last reported earnings on November 08, 2018 when it released Sep-18 results that receded expectations. The company raked in $0.35 per share, -97.2% change on the same period last year. That was worse than consensus for $0.4. Revenue for the recent quarter stood at $5.34 billion, down -14% on last year and below the $5.49 billion predicted by analysts. For this quarter, Wall Street analysts forecast revenue in a range of $5.19 billion to $5.54 billion, which should be compared with $5.53 billion generated last year. EPS is seen in a range of $0.22 to $0.42, against the $0.33 reported a year ago.