Hill-Rom (HRC) Cut to Sell at Zacks Investment Research

Hill-Rom (NYSE:HRC) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued to investors on Thursday, April 12th.

According to Zacks, “Hill-Rom has outperformed its industry in a year's time.  However, a decline in revenues at the company's Patient Support Systems segment is quite disappointing. Also, foreign exchange and a tough competitive landscape remain headwinds. On a positive note, of late the company has been seeing solid year-over-year increase in revenues on strong international growth primarily banking on the 'One Hill-Rom' approach. The company is focusing on product innovation, the latest one being Connex Cardio ECG. Hill-Rom has updated its 2020 long-range financial objectives and outlook considering gains from the new tax reform. Hill-Rom now expects to drive adjusted earnings by 12-14% on a compound annual basis through 2020, compared with the previous guidance of 10-12%. Moreover, an improvement in gross and adjusted operating margin buoys optimism.”

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A number of other equities analysts have also weighed in on HRC. KeyCorp reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $94.00 target price on shares of Hill-Rom in a research note on Thursday, December 21st. Morgan Stanley lowered shares of Hill-Rom from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, January 2nd. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Raymond James raised shares of Hill-Rom from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $94.00 target price for the company in a research note on Wednesday, January 3rd. Barclays reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $100.00 target price on shares of Hill-Rom in a research note on Wednesday, January 10th. Finally, Needham & Company LLC reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $105.00 target price (up from $90.00) on shares of Hill-Rom in a research note on Tuesday, January 16th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $93.89.

Shares of HRC stock opened at $87.25 on Thursday. Hill-Rom has a 12-month low of $70.73 and a 12-month high of $91.11. The firm has a market capitalization of $5,786.23, a PE ratio of 22.60, a PEG ratio of 1.41 and a beta of 0.97. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.39, a current ratio of 1.75 and a quick ratio of 1.29.

Hill-Rom (NYSE:HRC) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, January 26th. The medical technology company reported $0.92 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.79 by $0.13. Hill-Rom had a net margin of 7.14% and a return on equity of 20.24%. The company had revenue of $669.70 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $670.00 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.75 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 5.1% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts expect that Hill-Rom will post 4.62 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Hill-Rom news, SVP Deborah Rasin sold 7,590 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, April 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $86.02, for a total transaction of $652,891.80. Following the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 14,028 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,206,688.56. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Insiders own 1.90% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of HRC. We Are One Seven LLC bought a new stake in Hill-Rom during the 4th quarter worth about $188,000. CAPROCK Group Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Hill-Rom in the 4th quarter valued at about $211,000. Braun Stacey Associates Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Hill-Rom in the 4th quarter valued at about $233,000. BancorpSouth Bank bought a new stake in shares of Hill-Rom in the 4th quarter valued at about $241,000. Finally, Atria Investments LLC bought a new stake in shares of Hill-Rom in the 4th quarter valued at about $262,000. 82.49% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Hill-Rom

Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc operates as a medical technology company worldwide. It provides medical surgical beds, intensive care unit beds, bariatric patient beds, lifts and other devices, non-invasive therapeutic products and surfaces, and communications technologies and software solutions; and medical equipment management services, as well as sells equipment service contracts for its capital equipment.

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