An issue of Ensco Plc (NYSE:ESV) bonds rose 1.3% as a percentage of their face value during trading on Wednesday. The high-yield issue of debt has a 4.5% coupon and is set to mature on October 1, 2024. The bonds in the issue are now trading at $84.50 and were trading at $82.25 last week. Price moves in a company’s bonds in credit markets often predict parallel moves in its stock price.

ESV has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. ValuEngine raised Ensco from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, September 1st. UBS raised Ensco from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their target price for the company from $6.00 to $8.00 in a research note on Monday, September 25th. Nordea Equity Research reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $8.00 target price on shares of Ensco in a research note on Saturday, September 30th. Deutsche Bank initiated coverage on Ensco in a research note on Tuesday, October 10th. They issued a “hold” rating and a $6.00 target price for the company. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut Ensco from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 12th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Ensco presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $8.24.

Ensco Plc (ESV) traded down $0.32 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $5.26. The stock had a trading volume of 13,705,700 shares, compared to its average volume of 14,572,272. The company has a quick ratio of 5.04, a current ratio of 5.04 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.58. Ensco Plc has a 52 week low of $4.10 and a 52 week high of $12.04.

Ensco (NYSE:ESV) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The offshore drilling services provider reported ($0.05) earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of ($0.16) by $0.11. The company had revenue of $460.00 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $457.79 million. Ensco had a negative return on equity of 0.37% and a negative net margin of 3.04%. Ensco’s revenue for the quarter was down 16.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.28 earnings per share. equities research analysts anticipate that Ensco Plc will post -0.53 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 15th. Stockholders of record on Monday, December 4th will be given a dividend of $0.01 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, December 1st. This represents a $0.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.76%. Ensco’s dividend payout ratio is currently -21.05%.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Cipher Capital LP boosted its position in shares of Ensco by 98.4% during the second quarter. Cipher Capital LP now owns 466,177 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $2,405,000 after buying an additional 231,157 shares during the period. Contrarius Investment Management Ltd boosted its position in shares of Ensco by 114.5% during the second quarter. Contrarius Investment Management Ltd now owns 7,638,005 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $39,412,000 after buying an additional 4,077,861 shares during the period. First Trust Advisors LP raised its holdings in Ensco by 209.0% during the second quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 1,116,657 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $5,762,000 after acquiring an additional 755,250 shares in the last quarter. South Dakota Investment Council raised its holdings in Ensco by 19.1% during the second quarter. South Dakota Investment Council now owns 487,200 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $2,514,000 after acquiring an additional 78,100 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BlueMountain Capital Management LLC raised its holdings in Ensco by 66.4% during the second quarter. BlueMountain Capital Management LLC now owns 799,721 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $4,127,000 after acquiring an additional 319,031 shares in the last quarter. 76.88% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Ensco

Ensco plc is an offshore contract drilling company. The Company provides offshore contract drilling services to the international oil and gas industry. Its segments include Floaters, Jackups and Other. The Floaters segment includes its drillships and semisubmersible rigs, and provides contract drilling.

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