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Companhia Paranaense de Energia (NYSE:ELP) was upgraded by Zacks from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday. The firm currently has a $18.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks‘s price target points to a potential upside of 21.70% from the stock’s previous close.

Zacks’ analyst wrote, “COPEL has solid long-term growth prospects, especially in the light of an anticipated rise of 5.9% in the annual electricity demand in Brazil. Also, with revival in the economic health of the country, huge investments are being made for infrastructural developments that, in turn, will boost electricity demand. To benefit from growing electricity needs, COPEL has planned investments worth roughly R$2.6 billion for 2014, in order to improve its electricity generation capacity. In this regard, the recent agreement for a 49% stake acquisition in Voltalia’s wind farm complex is worth mentioning. Considering all these factors as well as the company’s stellar performance in first-quarter 2014, with net earnings and revenues increasing by 46% and 28% respectively, we upgrade our recommendation from Neutral to Outperform on COPEL. “

Separately, analysts at TheStreet upgraded shares of Companhia Paranaense de Energia from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 20th.

Shares of Companhia Paranaense de Energia (NYSE:ELP) traded up 1.69% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $15.04. The stock had a trading volume of 143,124 shares. Companhia Paranaense de Energia has a 52 week low of $9.82 and a 52 week high of $16.38. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $15.17 and its 200-day moving average is $13.15. The company has a market cap of $4.116 billion and a P/E ratio of 7.41.

Companhia Paranaense de Energia (NYSE:ELP) is a Brazil-based holding company involved principally in the electrical energy sector.

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