Abbott Laboratories (ABT): Yawn All The Way to Retirement With It

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) sees the need for improvement as opportunity and has high hopes for its diagnostics business. The innovative automated instruments provided to laboratories, clinics, and hospitals allow doctors to quickly and accurately diagnose disease like never before. They also represented 81.2% of the segment’s total revenue in the first quarter.

The company boasts 10 platforms that address the quickly expanding fields of immunology (various ailments), hematology (blood analysis), and molecular biology (genetic analysis). Why stop there? A total of six new platforms are being developed, including the ultra-awesome universal-microbe-detecting-PLEX-ID.

Look for the growth to pick up in coming periods: Operating margin for diagnostics is currently “on track to exceed its full-year target of 20% by 2015,” according to the company. Despite the progress, I would like to see Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) expand its presence in molecular technologies, which bring in just 10% of total diagnostics revenue. The ability to detect a patient’s genetic susceptibility to disease will become increasingly important in the future of medicine.

Foolish bottom line

I can’t promise that Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) stock won’t cool off from its recent all-time highs. However, the company is as determined as ever to expand its market dominance in cardiovascular devices to diagnostics and increase its presence in nutrition. AbbVie Inc (NYSE:ABBV) may have taken most of the former giant’s dividend with it, but it faces problems of its own with Humira coming off patent in a few years. Boring ol’ Abbott faces no such patent cliff and can continue to grow slow and steady for years to come. Put it on your watchlist, maybe grab some shares, and yawn your way to market-beating returns.

The article Yawn Your Way to Retirement With Abbott Laboratories Stock originally appeared on Fool.com and is written by Maxx Chatsko.

Fool contributor Maxx Chatsko has no position in any stocks mentioned. Check out his personal portfolio or his CAPS page, or follow him on Twitter, @BlacknGoldFool, to keep up with his writing on energy, bioprocessing, and emerging technologies. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Johnson & Johnson.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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