St. Jude Medical Hits New 52-Week High - Analyst Blog

Shares of major medical devices manufacturer St. Jude Medical Inc. ( STJ ) reached new 52-week high of $69.86 in mid-day trading last Friday. Shares of the company closed marginally lower at $69.84 on the same day, representing a solid one-year return of 61.4%.

St. Jude Medical has a market cap of $19.85 billion. Considering the last one month, shares of St. Jude Medical returned 8.9%, higher than the S&P 500 return of 5.0%.

Shares of St. Jude Medical reached a 52-week high soon after the company announced receiving the 2014 Innovation Award at Cardiostim 2014, the 19th World Congress in Cardiac Electrophysiology and Cardiac Techniques for its Nanostim leadless pacemaker on Jun 18.

A congress committee of electrophysiologists has chosen St. Jude Medical's Nanostim leadless pacemaker for the award being the most innovative product in electrophysiology and cardiac technique.

The Nanostim leadless pacemaker measures less than 10% of the size of a conventional pacemaker and can be implanted directly into the heart by a non-surgical procedure (through femoral vein with a steerable catheter), unlike conventional pacemakers, which require a more invasive surgery.

Last year, Nanostim pacemaker obtained the CE Mark approval in Europe. After its approval, the pacemaker has been implanted in patients located in the U.K., Germany, Italy, Czech Republic, France, Spain, and the Netherlands.

St. Jude Medical posted a 4.3% rise in adjusted net earnings per share to 96 cents for the first quarter of 2014 from 92 cents a year-ago. With this, this St. Paul, MN-based medical device maker beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny and met its own guidance of 94 and 96 cents per share for the quarter.

Revenues grew about 2.0% to $1,363 million for the quarter, exceeding the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1,355 million as well as the company's own guided range of 1,280 to $1,360 million. Unfavorable foreign currency translation reduced revenues by roughly $25 million.

For full year 2014, St. Jude Medical upgraded its revenues guidance to the range of $5,610 to $5,760 million from the prior range of $5,600 million to $5,750 million. It also upgraded its adjusted earnings per share guidance to $3.95-$4.00 from the prior range of $3.94-$3.99. The current Zacks Consensus Estimates for earnings per share and revenues for the year are pegged at $3.98 and $5,700 million.

Currently, St. Jude carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the medical products industry that are worth considering include Cardica Inc. ( CRDC ), NeuroMetrix Inc. ( NURO ), and PositiveID Corporation ( PSID ). All of them retain a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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