West Pharmaceutical Services Inc. (NYSE:WST) – Equities research analysts at Jefferies Group cut their Q1 2018 EPS estimates for shares of West Pharmaceutical Services in a research note issued to investors on Thursday. Jefferies Group analyst D. Windley now forecasts that the medical instruments supplier will earn $0.66 per share for the quarter, down from their prior estimate of $0.82. Jefferies Group also issued estimates for West Pharmaceutical Services’ Q2 2018 earnings at $0.73 EPS, Q3 2018 earnings at $0.70 EPS, FY2018 earnings at $2.83 EPS and FY2019 earnings at $3.20 EPS.
WST has been the subject of several other research reports. Goldman Sachs Group began coverage on West Pharmaceutical Services in a research note on Wednesday, January 24th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $110.00 target price for the company. Zacks Investment Research downgraded West Pharmaceutical Services from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Saturday, January 6th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co boosted their price objective on West Pharmaceutical Services from $105.00 to $112.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, October 27th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $108.17.
Shares of West Pharmaceutical Services (NYSE:WST) opened at $89.64 on Monday. The stock has a market capitalization of $6,493.42, a P/E ratio of 45.04, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.87 and a beta of 1.04. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.15, a current ratio of 2.59 and a quick ratio of 1.87. West Pharmaceutical Services has a 52 week low of $77.97 and a 52 week high of $103.36.
West Pharmaceutical Services (NYSE:WST) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, February 15th. The medical instruments supplier reported $0.64 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.62 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $415.60 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $416.90 million. West Pharmaceutical Services had a return on equity of 14.79% and a net margin of 9.42%. West Pharmaceutical Services’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.54 earnings per share.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, May 2nd. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, April 18th will be given a $0.14 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, April 17th. This represents a $0.56 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.62%. West Pharmaceutical Services’s payout ratio is currently 28.14%.
West Pharmaceutical Services declared that its board has initiated a share repurchase program on Thursday, February 15th that permits the company to repurchase 800,000 shares. This repurchase authorization permits the medical instruments supplier to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are typically an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.
In other West Pharmaceutical Services news, CFO William J. Federici sold 21,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $99.01, for a total value of $2,079,210.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 190,493 shares in the company, valued at $18,860,711.93. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Insiders own 1.90% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Captrust Financial Advisors bought a new position in shares of West Pharmaceutical Services during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $125,000. Citigroup Inc. raised its holdings in shares of West Pharmaceutical Services by 95.1% during the second quarter. Citigroup Inc. now owns 1,569 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock valued at $148,000 after acquiring an additional 765 shares in the last quarter. Nomura Holdings Inc. bought a new position in shares of West Pharmaceutical Services during the second quarter valued at approximately $201,000. Grandfield & Dodd LLC bought a new position in shares of West Pharmaceutical Services during the third quarter valued at approximately $201,000. Finally, Private Advisor Group LLC bought a new position in shares of West Pharmaceutical Services during the third quarter valued at approximately $202,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 94.85% of the company’s stock.
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West Pharmaceutical Services Company Profile
West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc is a manufacturer of packaging components and delivery systems for injectable drugs and healthcare products. The Company’s products include vial containment solutions, prefillable systems, self-injection platforms, cartridge systems and components, reconstitution and transfer systems, intradermal delivery solutions, specialty components, and contract manufacturing and analytical services.
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