Pacific Ethanol Inc. (NASDAQ:PEIX)’s share price dropped 3.8% on Thursday . The company traded as low as $5.56 and last traded at $5.56, with a volume of 343,654 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $5.78.

PEIX has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Rodman & Renshaw initiated coverage on Pacific Ethanol in a research note on Tuesday, May 24th. They set a “buy” rating and a $11.00 price objective on the stock. Roth Capital lowered their price objective on Pacific Ethanol from $10.00 to $7.50 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research note on Monday, March 14th. HC Wainwright reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Pacific Ethanol in a research note on Tuesday, May 24th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised Pacific Ethanol from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 25th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and four have issued a buy rating to the stock. Pacific Ethanol has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $9.17.

The firm’s market cap is $239.32 million. The company’s 50-day moving average is $5.56 and its 200 day moving average is $4.50.

Pacific Ethanol (NASDAQ:PEIX) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 4th. The company reported ($0.32) EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of ($0.13) by $0.19. The firm earned $342.40 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $360.37 million. Pacific Ethanol’s revenue for the quarter was up 66.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned ($0.19) earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts expect that Pacific Ethanol Inc. will post ($0.13) earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, VP Christopher W. Wright sold 31,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, June 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $6.00, for a total value of $186,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 63,936 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $383,616. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website.

A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in PEIX. Boston Partners increased its position in Pacific Ethanol by 9.6% in the fourth quarter. Boston Partners now owns 2,463,018 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,773,000 after buying an additional 216,550 shares during the last quarter. GSA Capital Partners LLP increased its position in Pacific Ethanol by 51.6% in the fourth quarter. GSA Capital Partners LLP now owns 626,253 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,993,000 after buying an additional 213,212 shares during the last quarter. Russell Frank Co increased its position in Pacific Ethanol by 7.6% in the fourth quarter. Russell Frank Co now owns 542,186 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,489,000 after buying an additional 38,462 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Marshall Wace LLP increased its position in Pacific Ethanol by 1.3% in the fourth quarter. Marshall Wace LLP now owns 409,972 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,960,000 after buying an additional 5,340 shares during the last quarter.

Pacific Ethanol, Inc (Pacific Ethanol) is a marketer and producer of low-carbon renewable fuels in the Western United States. Pacific Ethanol markets all the ethanol produced by four ethanol production facilities located in California, Idaho and Oregon, or the Pacific Ethanol Plants, all the ethanol produced by three other ethanol producers in the Western United States and ethanol purchased from other third-party suppliers throughout the United States.

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