Cognex’s (CGNX) Buy Rating Reiterated at Needham & Company LLC

Needham & Company LLC reaffirmed their buy rating on shares of Cognex (NASDAQ:CGNX) in a research report released on Thursday morning, Marketbeat.com reports. The brokerage currently has a $47.00 target price on the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock, up from their prior target price of $45.00.

Several other equities analysts have also recently weighed in on the stock. BidaskClub cut shares of Cognex from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Thursday. Berenberg Bank assumed coverage on shares of Cognex in a research note on Monday, November 19th. They set a buy rating and a $54.00 target price for the company. Daiwa Capital Markets set a $49.00 target price on shares of Cognex and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, November 1st. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Cognex from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 30th. Finally, Morgan Stanley cut their target price on shares of Cognex from $52.00 to $40.00 and set an equal weight rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday, October 30th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $51.93.

CGNX opened at $39.66 on Thursday. The firm has a market cap of $6.83 billion, a P/E ratio of 27.35, a P/E/G ratio of 2.20 and a beta of 1.90. Cognex has a fifty-two week low of $36.16 and a fifty-two week high of $70.00.

Cognex (NASDAQ:CGNX) last posted its earnings results on Monday, October 29th. The scientific and technical instruments company reported $0.45 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.37 by $0.08. The company had revenue of $232.22 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $227.15 million. Cognex had a net margin of 18.52% and a return on equity of 20.88%. Cognex’s quarterly revenue was down 12.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.14 earnings per share. As a group, equities analysts predict that Cognex will post 1.2 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Cognex declared that its board has approved a stock buyback plan on Monday, October 29th that allows the company to buyback $200.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization allows the scientific and technical instruments company to reacquire up to 2.8% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, November 30th. Shareholders of record on Friday, November 16th were given a dividend of $0.05 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, November 15th. This represents a $0.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.50%. This is a positive change from Cognex’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.05. Cognex’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 13.79%.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. CAPROCK Group Inc. bought a new position in Cognex during the third quarter valued at $221,000. Chatham Capital Group Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Cognex in the 3rd quarter worth about $232,000. HMS Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Cognex in the 3rd quarter worth about $242,000. Perigon Wealth Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Cognex in the 2nd quarter worth about $295,000. Finally, FDx Advisors Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Cognex by 29.9% in the 2nd quarter. FDx Advisors Inc. now owns 6,821 shares of the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock worth $304,000 after acquiring an additional 1,569 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 91.02% of the company’s stock.

About Cognex

Cognex Corporation provides machine vision products that capture and analyze visual information in order to automate tasks primarily in manufacturing processes worldwide. The company offers machine vision products, which are used to automate the manufacturing and tracking of discrete items, such as mobile phones, aspirin bottles, and automobile tires by locating, identifying, inspecting, and measuring them during the manufacturing or distribution process.

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Analyst Recommendations for Cognex (NASDAQ:CGNX)

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