Exponent (NASDAQ:EXPO) Upgraded to “Buy” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Exponent (NASDAQ:EXPO) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report released on Monday morning, Zacks.com reports. Zacks Investment Research currently has $67.00 price target on the business services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Exponent, Inc., is a multidisciplinary organization of scientists, physicians, engineers and business consultants performing in-depth scientific research and analysis in over 90 technical disciplines. The company is an engineering and scientific consulting firm providing solutions to complex problems. The firm has been best known for analyzing accidents and failures to determine their causes, but in recent years it has become more active in assisting clients with human health, environmental and engineering issues associated with new products to help prevent problems in the future. The Company serves clients in the automotive, aviation, chemical, construction, consumer products, energy, government, health, insurance, manufacturing, technology and other sectors. “

A number of other equities analysts also recently commented on the company. Cantor Fitzgerald restated a buy rating on shares of Tivity Health in a report on Monday, April 22nd. BidaskClub downgraded Vertex Pharmaceuticals from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Tuesday, July 9th. Finally, William Blair restated a market perform rating on shares of W W Grainger in a report on Monday, April 22nd. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $62.33.

Exponent stock opened at $60.81 on Monday. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $58.35. The stock has a market cap of $3.14 billion, a P/E ratio of 48.65 and a beta of 0.44. The company has a current ratio of 4.22, a quick ratio of 4.22 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.06. Exponent has a 12 month low of $44.44 and a 12 month high of $61.21.

Exponent (NASDAQ:EXPO) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 18th. The business services provider reported $0.42 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.35 by $0.07. The company had revenue of $93.40 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $93.52 million. Exponent had a return on equity of 23.10% and a net margin of 19.53%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 3.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.75 EPS. Analysts expect that Exponent will post 1.42 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 21st. Stockholders of record on Friday, June 7th were issued a $0.16 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, June 6th. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.05%. Exponent’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 51.20%.

In other news, Director Carol Lindstrom sold 1,800 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $56.92, for a total value of $102,456.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 3,212 shares in the company, valued at approximately $182,827.04. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Company insiders own 2.30% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. BlackRock Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Exponent by 0.3% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 7,524,004 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $434,286,000 after buying an additional 21,968 shares during the period. Conestoga Capital Advisors LLC raised its holdings in shares of Exponent by 0.4% during the 1st quarter. Conestoga Capital Advisors LLC now owns 2,319,167 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $133,862,000 after buying an additional 8,446 shares during the period. Janus Henderson Group PLC raised its holdings in shares of Exponent by 1.4% during the 1st quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 1,036,313 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $59,816,000 after buying an additional 14,524 shares during the period. FMR LLC raised its holdings in shares of Exponent by 39.8% during the 1st quarter. FMR LLC now owns 993,288 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $57,333,000 after buying an additional 282,530 shares during the period. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Exponent by 9.6% during the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 648,674 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $32,893,000 after buying an additional 56,600 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 88.68% of the company’s stock.

About Exponent

Exponent, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a science and engineering consulting company worldwide. Its services include analysis of product development, product recall, regulatory compliance, and the discovery of potential problems related to products, people, property, and impending litigation.

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