JPMorgan Chase & Co. Downgrades Xcel Energy to Underweight (XEL)
Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) was downgraded by stock analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. from a “neutral” rating to an “underweight” rating in a report issued on Tuesday, TheFlyOnTheWall.com reports.
The analysts wrote, “Xcel has seen two key growth driver changes in 2013: 1) a challenging MN rate case outcome will now likely pressure earnings growth and 2) incremental company-owned generation projects are now more likely to be built. We therefore see more of a slower growth, higher capital deployment scenario in the near term versus management’s previous expectations. XEL’s mild underperformance so far this year only partially reflects the MN proceedings and is bolstered in part by the potential for outer-year new generation-driven EPS growth, in our opinion. We do not see positive RFP outcomes or maintenance of the long-term 5-7% growth target as significantly detracting from our call, as most of the benefits would occur past 2015. We are instead positioning for more disappointment in the form of 2014 EPS guidance and potential incremental equity needs as well as ongoing MN regulatory risk and are downgrading to UW.”
Shares of Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) traded up 1.01% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, hitting $27.98. The stock had a trading volume of 1,175,664 shares. Xcel Energy has a one year low of $25.84 and a one year high of $31.79. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $29.34 and its 200-day moving average is $29.36. The company has a market cap of $13.922 billion and a P/E ratio of 14.00.
Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) last released its earnings data on Thursday, August 1st. The company reported $0.40 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the analysts’ consensus estimate of $0.38 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $2.58 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.40 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.38 earnings per share. Xcel Energy’s revenue was up 13.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that Xcel Energy will post $1.90 EPS for the current fiscal year.
Several other analysts have also recently commented on the stock. Analysts at UBS AG initiated coverage on shares of Xcel Energy in a research note to investors on Friday. They set a “neutral” rating and a $30.00 price target on the stock. Separately, analysts at Zacks reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of Xcel Energy in a research note to investors on Friday, August 2nd. They now have a $32.00 price target on the stock. Finally, analysts at Zacks reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of Xcel Energy in a research note to investors on Friday, June 7th. They now have a $30.00 price target on the stock.
One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Xcel Energy presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $31.71.
Xcel Energy Inc is a holding company with subsidiaries engaged primarily in the utility business. During the year ended December 31, 2012, the Company’s operations included the activity of four wholly owned utility subsidiaries that serve electric and natural gas customers in eight states.
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