Varian Medical Systems (NYSE:VAR) Raised to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Varian Medical Systems (NYSE:VAR) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note published on Wednesday, September 12th.

According to Zacks, “Varian outperformed the industry in a year's time. The company’s Halcyon platform has been the key driver of growth of late, which is now operational in centers across Africa. Solid revenue from Oncology and strong overseas presence, particularly in the emerging countries are positives. The recent display of brachytherapy solutions also deserve mention. Varian has also been going global in acquisitions and agreements. Recent acquisitions include, Sirtex of Australia and COOP of Taiwan. A solid guidance for fiscal 2018 instills confidence. However, Varian has not booked any ProBeam orders in the last-reported quarter. Lackluster performance in the Particle Therapy unit is a concern. The company competes with large electronic companies as well as smaller and more specialized radiation therapy equipment manufacturers. Thus, competition is likely to mar revenues.”

Separately, JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded shares of Varian Medical Systems from a neutral rating to an underweight rating and set a $105.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Thursday, June 28th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $117.43.

Shares of VAR stock traded down $0.59 on Wednesday, hitting $108.06. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 670,057 shares, compared to its average volume of 676,295. Varian Medical Systems has a fifty-two week low of $99.00 and a fifty-two week high of $130.29. The firm has a market cap of $10.25 billion, a PE ratio of 30.02, a PEG ratio of 3.15 and a beta of 0.78.

Varian Medical Systems (NYSE:VAR) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, July 25th. The medical equipment provider reported $1.04 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.99 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $709.10 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $663.19 million. Varian Medical Systems had a net margin of 4.07% and a return on equity of 27.51%. The business’s revenue was up 12.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.04 EPS. Sell-side analysts anticipate that Varian Medical Systems will post 4.45 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other news, SVP John W. Kuo sold 962 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $108.84, for a total transaction of $104,704.08. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 30,848 shares in the company, valued at $3,357,496.32. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, SVP John W. Kuo sold 1,327 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, September 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $110.90, for a total transaction of $147,164.30. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 30,551 shares in the company, valued at $3,388,105.90. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 16,516 shares of company stock worth $1,836,970. 0.78% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in VAR. Intact Investment Management Inc. acquired a new position in Varian Medical Systems in the second quarter valued at approximately $205,000. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA lifted its holdings in Varian Medical Systems by 81.0% in the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 64,102 shares of the medical equipment provider’s stock valued at $7,290,000 after buying an additional 28,680 shares during the period. Motley Fool Wealth Management LLC lifted its holdings in Varian Medical Systems by 3.3% in the second quarter. Motley Fool Wealth Management LLC now owns 48,918 shares of the medical equipment provider’s stock valued at $5,563,000 after buying an additional 1,548 shares during the period. Sei Investments Co. lifted its holdings in Varian Medical Systems by 66.8% in the second quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 35,014 shares of the medical equipment provider’s stock valued at $3,982,000 after buying an additional 14,024 shares during the period. Finally, Toronto Dominion Bank lifted its holdings in Varian Medical Systems by 19.4% in the second quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 58,802 shares of the medical equipment provider’s stock valued at $6,686,000 after buying an additional 9,563 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 92.44% of the company’s stock.

Varian Medical Systems Company Profile

Varian Medical Systems, Inc designs, manufactures, sells, and services medical devices and software products for treating cancer and other medical conditions worldwide. It operates through two segments, Oncology Systems and Varian Particle Therapy. The Oncology Systems segment provides hardware and software products for treating cancer with radiotherapy, fixed field intensity-modulated radiation therapy, image-guided radiation therapy, volumetric modulated arc therapy, stereotactic radiosurgery, stereotactic body radiotherapy, and brachytherapy.

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