Xcel Energy Inc. (XEL) Rating Increased to Hold at Zacks Investment Research
Xcel Energy Inc. (NYSE:XEL) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Thursday.
According to Zacks, “Xcel Energy’s long-term investment plans will strengthen its operations and help it to serve its expanding customer base in a more reliable and efficient manner. The company is also benefiting from improving economic conditions in its service territories. The company is focused on expanding its renewable generation assets and lowering its carbon footprint. Xcel Energy's operation is subject to stringent environmental legislations which call for additional expenditures and can adversely impact the company's profits. Rising debt levels of Xcel Energy is a concern, with its debt/capital ratio presently higher than the industry average. Despite safety measures, nuclear units run the possibility of accidents and forced shutdown, and Xcel Energy’s nuclear generation assets are not immune to such risks.”
A number of other equities analysts have also recently issued reports on XEL. Argus reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $48.00 price objective (up from $46.00) on shares of Xcel Energy in a research report on Wednesday, June 15th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised shares of Xcel Energy from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and boosted their target price for the stock from $39.00 to $47.00 in a report on Thursday, June 16th. Jefferies Group boosted their target price on shares of Xcel Energy from $42.00 to $45.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, August 4th. Finally, SunTrust Banks Inc. reduced their target price on shares of Xcel Energy from $42.00 to $41.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, August 29th. Six investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of C$44.00.
Shares of Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) opened at 39.61 on Thursday. The company’s 50 day moving average is $41.55 and its 200-day moving average is $41.95. Xcel Energy has a one year low of $34.33 and a one year high of $45.42. The firm has a market capitalization of $20.12 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.78 and a beta of 0.13.
Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.39 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $2.50 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.52 billion. Xcel Energy had a return on equity of 10.10% and a net margin of 9.92%. Xcel Energy’s revenue for the quarter was down .6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.39 earnings per share. Equities analysts expect that Xcel Energy will post $2.20 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, October 20th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, September 15th will be paid a $0.34 dividend. This represents a $1.36 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.43%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, September 13th. Xcel Energy’s dividend payout ratio is currently 64.46%.
In other news, EVP Marvin E. Jr. Mcdaniel sold 11,900 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of C$41.66, for a total value of C$495,754.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 79,404 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately C$3,307,970.64. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. 0.20% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of XEL. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised its position in shares of Xcel Energy by 11.0% in the second quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 29,652,226 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,327,827,000 after buying an additional 2,933,264 shares in the last quarter. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. bought a new position in shares of Xcel Energy during the second quarter valued at about $84,273,000. State Street Corp raised its position in shares of Xcel Energy by 7.4% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 25,730,566 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,076,045,000 after buying an additional 1,768,675 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors raised its position in shares of Xcel Energy by 9.3% in the second quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 16,121,533 shares of the company’s stock valued at $721,922,000 after buying an additional 1,367,234 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Janus Capital Management LLC raised its position in shares of Xcel Energy by 83.3% in the second quarter. Janus Capital Management LLC now owns 2,685,576 shares of the company’s stock valued at $120,260,000 after buying an additional 1,220,562 shares in the last quarter. 70.91% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Xcel Energy Company Profile
Xcel Energy Inc is a public utility holding company. The Company’s operations include activity of four utility subsidiaries that serve electric and natural gas customers. Its segments are regulated electric utility, regulated natural gas utility and all other. The regulated electric utility segment generates, transmits and distributes electricity in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, North Dakota, South Dakota, Colorado, Texas and New Mexico.
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