Abbott (ABT) Hits New 52-Week High on Solid Growth Drivers

On June 14, shares of Abbott Laboratories ABT scaled a new 52-week high of $82.86, closing the session a tad bit lower at $82.22. The upside followed after impressive first-quarter 2019 earnings results.

Abbott had a great run on the bourses in the past year. The stock has improved 30.9% compared with the S&P 500 index’s rise of 2.7%. The return is also higher than the broader industry’s rise of 4.5%.

Considering the above factor, theglobal healthcare leaderis expected to scale new highs in the upcoming quarters. Further, the company delivered average positive earnings surprise of 1.86% in the trailing four quarters.

In the past 3 months, earnings estimates for the current year have inched up 0.62% to $3.22.

Factors Driving the Stock

Product Launches: The market is upbeat about the company’s spree of strategic product launches. In May, Abbott launched the next-generation Confirm Rx insertable cardiac monitor (ICM). The new product is a smarter heart monitor for better arrhythmia detection. Since the launch of this product in the United States and Europe, the company has been generating revenues significantly.

Abbott also announced that m-PIMA HIV-1/2 VL, the world's first point-of-care viral load diagnostic test has received the World Health Organization's Prequalification approval (WHO PQ). Abbott has recently attained CE Mark for its Alinity m diagnostics system and assays. The growing share price was driven by FDA’s approval for a new, expanded application to Abbott’s leading MitraClip device, which is designed to repair a leaky mitral valve without open heart surgery.

Strategic Partnership: The company announced its partnership with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) on the BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) initiative to advance in neuroscience research.

Positive study outcomes:   Abbott has generated positive outcomes from several of its clinical trial studies, which have factors have driven the company’s shares. It has announced positive data on the use of its FreeStyle Libre system, a revolutionary continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) technology. Recently, the company announced positive late-breaking data from its TRILUMINATE study of the minimally invasive tricuspid valve repair system. Abbott revealed that High Sensitive Troponin-I blood test could predict the possibility of a cardiac incident years before it occurs in patients with no symptoms.

Zacks Rank and Key Picks

Abbott currently carries a Zacks Rank # 3 (Hold).

Some other better-ranked stocks in the broader medical space are Cerner Corporation CERN, Penumbra PEN and Bruker Corporation BRKR. Each currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1(Strong Buy) Rank stocks here.

Cerner’s long-term earnings growth rate is expected to be 13.5%.

Penumbra’s long-term earnings growth rate is projected at 21.5%.

Bruker’s long-term earnings growth rate is estimated at 11.7%.

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