Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Encana Corporation (NYSE:ECA) (TSE:ECA) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report published on Tuesday morning. They currently have $13.00 target price on the oil and gas company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “The Canadian energy behemoth – which smashed profit estimates in the Jun quarter on the back of solid production and margins – holds one of the largest natural gas resource portfolios in North America. Additionally, the company's cost cut initiatives and divestiture of high-cost low-profit gas assets will increase its financial flexibility and fund the transition to a more diversified oil and gas firm. Finally, last year's equity offering has helped it lower debt levels, apart from supporting more number of rigs in the Permian basin, where Encana is a top tier operator. Therefore, notwithstanding the stock's impressive run in the past 6 months, we believe that ECA offers more upside for investors going ahead. “

A number of other research analysts have also recently issued reports on ECA. UBS AG raised Encana Corporation from an outperform rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 5th. Morgan Stanley raised their price objective on Encana Corporation from $11.50 to $14.00 and gave the company an equal weight rating in a research note on Friday, October 13th. BidaskClub cut Encana Corporation from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Thursday, August 17th. Canaccord Genuity set a $14.00 target price on Encana Corporation and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Tuesday, June 20th. Finally, AltaCorp Capital raised Encana Corporation from a sector perform rating to an outperform rating in a research note on Monday, July 24th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating, sixteen have assigned a buy rating and four have assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $14.11.

Encana Corporation (NYSE ECA) traded down 1.22% during midday trading on Tuesday, hitting $11.38. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 12,764,934 shares. Encana Corporation has a 52-week low of $8.01 and a 52-week high of $13.85. The company has a market cap of $11.07 billion, a PE ratio of 13.56 and a beta of 2.12. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $10.93 and a 200 day moving average of $10.21.

Encana Corporation (NYSE:ECA) (TSE:ECA) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 21st. The oil and gas company reported $0.18 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.03 by $0.15. Encana Corporation had a return on equity of 6.25% and a net margin of 19.09%. The firm had revenue of $1.08 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $773.19 million. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.10 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts expect that Encana Corporation will post $0.50 EPS for the current year.

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Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Stevens Capital Management LP purchased a new position in shares of Encana Corporation during the second quarter valued at approximately $102,000. Gotham Asset Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Encana Corporation during the second quarter valued at approximately $109,000. Atria Investments LLC purchased a new position in shares of Encana Corporation during the second quarter valued at approximately $113,000. Equity Investment Corp Acquisition Inc lifted its holdings in shares of Encana Corporation by 5.4% during the second quarter. Equity Investment Corp Acquisition Inc now owns 12,996 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $114,000 after purchasing an additional 666 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Quantitative Systematic Strategies LLC purchased a new position in shares of Encana Corporation during the second quarter valued at approximately $118,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 66.76% of the company’s stock.

Encana Corporation Company Profile

Encana Corporation is an energy producer that is focused on developing its multi-basin portfolio of natural gas, oil and natural gas liquids (NGLs) producing plays. The Company’s operations also include the marketing of natural gas, oil and NGLs. All of its reserves and production are located in North America.

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Analyst Recommendations for Encana Corporation (NYSE:ECA)

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