Quest board boosts share repurchase authorization

Tue, 01/25/2011 - 4:45am
The Associated Press

Medical laboratory operator Quest Diagnostics Inc. said Tuesday its board of directors increased its share repurchase authorization by $750 million to $1 billion.

The Madison, N.J., company had 171 million shares outstanding as of Dec. 31. Last year, it repurchased about 15 million shares for $750 million.

Also on Tuesday, Quest said its fourth-quarter net income slipped 9 percent to $165.7 million, or 96 cents per share, from $181.6 million, or 97 cents per share, in the same quarter last year. Revenue also fell 1 percent to $1.82 billion, as clinical testing revenue and revenue per requisition dropped.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet expected, on average, earnings of 91 cents per share on $1.8 billion in revenue.

Shares of the company closed Monday at $54.17. Over the past 52 weeks, the stock has traded between $40.80 and $60.28.


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