The company is a strong pick among the contract research organizations (CROs) due to a promising future in the pre-clinical services (PCS) market.
It continues to gain share in early stage development via its PCS business, providing evidence of a nascent toxicology recovery.
The company has reported impressive results in all the quarters for 2013, and is looking solid to continue the performance.
More focus on strategic partnerships and mid-sized global bio-pharmaceutical firms, and increased outsourcing by the larger bio-pharmaceutical firms will help the company to better penetrate the global PCS market.
Goldman downgrades Charles River Labs (CRL -1.7%) to Sell from Neutral and lowers its price target to $38 from $44. Analyst Robert Jones cites (among other factors) "recent … channel checks [which] indicate still subdued early-stage spend and excess capacity as pharma prioritizes late-stage pipelines."
Charles River Labs (CRL -1.6%) slips on a Raymond James downgrade to Underperform from Market Perform. When asked about the move on CNBC earlier, Cramer said he doesn't agree. In the same segment, the Mad Money host called Guess' (GES +9%) Q1 "horrendous, but not horrendous enough" to keep the shares from rallying. (See also: GES earnings rundown)
Charles River Labs (CRL +3.2%) moves higher on a couple of upgrades earlier today. JPMorgan raises its rating on the shares to Overweight, saying the risk-reward is looking good going into 2013. The firm notes that longer term questions still remain, but given the improving fundamentals, ongoing cost discipline and a 10% free cash flow yield, the stock looks attractive at current levels. Separately, Wells Fargo also upped the shares to Outperform on valuation, saying that that guidance looks conservative with the midpoint only 5% below consensus.
Charles River Labs (CRL) -5.1% premarket after providing 2013 earnings guidance below expectations, at $2.80-$2.90 per share vs. $3.01 consensus estimate. The drug research services provider also expects 2012 EPS to come in between the low end and the midpoint of its previously estimated range of $2.68-$2.73.
Charles River Labs (CRL) is pursuing a sale of the company that could fetch as much as $40/share, and it's "just a matter of time" before a deal is completed, the Deal Reporter says. R.W. Baird expects shares to trade higher on the speculation unless management denies the story. CRL +2.1% premarket.