Johnson and Johnson (JNJ) shares are currently trading around $64.50, and the mean 12 month price target from analysts researching the stock is $72.69 (12.7% upside potential). This blue chip stock is trading above its 50-day exponential moving average of $63.80 and its 200-day exponential moving average of $63.74. It has been flirting with these averages for two or three months, though has been unable to remain in positive territory when compared to them for more than a few days. The stock has been range bound between $60 And $66 since mid July, having hit its 52 week high of $68.05 in early July after recovering well from its 52-week low of $57.50 set in mid March.
Earnings per share for the last 12 months are $4.10, and these are expected to reach to $5.27 in its next fiscal year (ending Dec 2012). These numbers place the shares on a trailing price to earnings ratio of 15.74, and a forward multiple of 12.31. Compared to its main competitors, these ratios are more demanding: Novartis (NVS) trades on a forward multiple of 9.65, Covidien (COV) at 9.52, and Abbott Labs (ABT) at 10.85.
All four companies pay good dividends. JNJ’s dividend of $2.28 is covered 1.79 times by earnings, and yields 3.60%. NVS’s dividend of $2.00 is covered 2.13 times and yields 3.70%; COV paid a dividend last year of $0.90, is covered 4 times by earnings and yields 2%; finally, ABT’s dividend of $1.92 is covered 1.5 times and yields 3.50%. Due to its yield and payout history, JNJ is a Dividend King.
Looking at current operating and profit margins tells a similar picture. JNJ’s operating margin is 25.42%, and profit margin 9.75%. NVS’s operating margin is 22.84%, with a profit margin of 17.10%; COV’s numbers are 22.23% and 16.14%; ABT’s numbers are 20.62% and 11.84% respectively. To continue reading, click here.