Argent Trust Co raised its stake in Novartis AG (NYSE:NVS) by 110.4% in the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 28,693 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 15,057 shares during the quarter. Argent Trust Co’s holdings in Novartis were worth $2,462,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.
Several other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of the company. Sonora Investment Management LLC increased its position in shares of Novartis by 93.9% during the fourth quarter. Sonora Investment Management LLC now owns 479 shares of the company’s stock valued at $41,000 after acquiring an additional 232 shares during the last quarter. Cornerstone Advisors Inc. increased its position in shares of Novartis by 89.4% during the third quarter. Cornerstone Advisors Inc. now owns 502 shares of the company’s stock valued at $43,000 after acquiring an additional 237 shares during the last quarter. Lavaca Capital LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Novartis during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $48,000. Focused Wealth Management Inc increased its position in shares of Novartis by 29.9% during the fourth quarter. Focused Wealth Management Inc now owns 868 shares of the company’s stock valued at $74,000 after acquiring an additional 200 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Destination Wealth Management increased its position in shares of Novartis by 37.5% during the fourth quarter. Destination Wealth Management now owns 987 shares of the company’s stock valued at $85,000 after acquiring an additional 269 shares during the last quarter. 10.99% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
A number of analysts recently commented on the company. JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded Novartis from a “neutral” rating to an “underweight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 2nd. Jefferies Financial Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $105.00 price target on shares of Novartis in a research report on Tuesday, December 11th. Cowen raised Novartis from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $100.00 price objective for the company in a report on Monday, November 26th. Goldman Sachs Group raised Novartis from a “neutral” rating to a “conviction-buy” rating in a report on Friday, November 16th. Finally, Wolfe Research started coverage on Novartis in a report on Tuesday, October 23rd. They set an “outperform” rating for the company. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating, seven have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $90.94.
Novartis (NYSE:NVS) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 30th. The company reported $1.24 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.33 by ($0.09). Novartis had a net margin of 24.30% and a return on equity of 15.66%. The firm had revenue of $13.27 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $13.33 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.21 earnings per share. Novartis’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.7% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts anticipate that Novartis AG will post 5.43 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently disclosed an annual dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, March 13th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, March 5th will be issued a dividend of $2.8646 per share. This represents a yield of 3.27%. This is a positive change from Novartis’s previous annual dividend of $2.33. The ex-dividend date is Monday, March 4th. Novartis’s dividend payout ratio is 37.52%.
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Novartis AG researches, develops, manufactures, and markets healthcare products worldwide. The company's Innovative Medicines segment offers patented prescription medicines for patients and healthcare providers. It also provides ophthalmology, neuroscience, immunology, hepatology and dermatology, respiratory, cardio-metabolic, and established medicine products.
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