Zacks: Brokerages Expect West Pharmaceutical Services (WST) Will Announce Earnings of $0.64 Per Share

Brokerages expect West Pharmaceutical Services (NYSE:WST) to post earnings per share (EPS) of $0.64 for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Two analysts have issued estimates for West Pharmaceutical Services’ earnings. West Pharmaceutical Services reported earnings per share of $0.60 during the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year over year growth rate of 6.7%. The firm is scheduled to announce its next earnings results before the market opens on Thursday, April 26th.

On average, analysts expect that West Pharmaceutical Services will report full-year earnings of $2.84 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $2.80 to $2.87. For the next fiscal year, analysts anticipate that the firm will post earnings of $3.24 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.06 to $3.40. Zacks Investment Research’s EPS calculations are an average based on a survey of research analysts that follow West Pharmaceutical Services.

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West Pharmaceutical Services (NYSE:WST) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, February 15th. The medical instruments supplier reported $0.64 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.62 by $0.02. West Pharmaceutical Services had a return on equity of 14.68% and a net margin of 9.42%. The business had revenue of $415.60 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $416.90 million. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.54 EPS. West Pharmaceutical Services’s revenue was up 8.7% on a year-over-year basis.

A number of research analysts have recently issued reports on the company. ValuEngine downgraded West Pharmaceutical Services from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Saturday, April 7th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded West Pharmaceutical Services from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $115.00 price target on the stock in a report on Saturday, February 3rd. Finally, Goldman Sachs assumed coverage on West Pharmaceutical Services in a report on Wednesday, January 24th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $110.00 price target on the stock. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the stock. West Pharmaceutical Services currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $108.17.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in WST. Alliancebernstein L.P. grew its stake in West Pharmaceutical Services by 75.8% during the 4th quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 2,042,166 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $201,500,000 after buying an additional 880,636 shares during the last quarter. TCW Group Inc. grew its stake in West Pharmaceutical Services by 127.0% during the 4th quarter. TCW Group Inc. now owns 715,727 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $70,621,000 after buying an additional 400,459 shares during the last quarter. Carillon Tower Advisers Inc. purchased a new position in West Pharmaceutical Services during the 4th quarter worth $39,036,000. William Blair Investment Management LLC grew its stake in West Pharmaceutical Services by 43.2% during the 4th quarter. William Blair Investment Management LLC now owns 1,272,407 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $125,548,000 after buying an additional 383,646 shares during the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Inc. grew its stake in West Pharmaceutical Services by 5.8% during the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 6,230,224 shares of the medical instruments supplier’s stock worth $614,734,000 after buying an additional 341,999 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 94.39% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE:WST opened at $91.96 on Monday. West Pharmaceutical Services has a 12-month low of $79.81 and a 12-month high of $103.36. The firm has a market capitalization of $6,744.61, a PE ratio of 37.67, a P/E/G ratio of 2.80 and a beta of 1.11. The company has a current ratio of 2.66, a quick ratio of 1.89 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.15.

West Pharmaceutical Services declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback plan on Thursday, February 15th that authorizes the company to repurchase 800,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the medical instruments supplier to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, May 2nd. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, April 18th will be issued a $0.14 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, April 17th. This represents a $0.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.61%. West Pharmaceutical Services’s dividend payout ratio is presently 20.14%.

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West Pharmaceutical Services Company Profile

West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc manufactures and sells containment and delivery systems for injectable drugs and healthcare products in the United States, Germany, France, Other European countries, and internationally. The company operates through two segments, Proprietary Products and Contract-Manufactured Products.

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