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Shares of FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE:FE) were the target of a significant increase in short interest in the month of July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 12,868,330 shares, an increase of 98.9% from the July 15th total of 6,468,904 shares, American Banking & Market News reports. Based on an average daily volume of 3,739,910 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.4 days. Approximately 3.1% of the company’s shares are sold short.

In other FirstEnergy Corp. news, SVP Bennett L. Gaines sold 5,400 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $32.25, for a total transaction of $174,150.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link.

A number of research firms have recently commented on FE. Analysts at Zacks reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of FirstEnergy Corp. in a research note on Thursday, August 7th. They now have a $33.00 price target on the stock. Separately, analysts at Deutsche Bank reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of FirstEnergy Corp. in a research note on Wednesday, August 6th. They now have a $33.00 price target on the stock, down previously from $34.00. Finally, analysts at Jefferies Group cut their price target on shares of FirstEnergy Corp. from $37.00 to $36.50 in a research note on Wednesday, August 6th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $33.17.

Shares of FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE:FE) opened at 32.72 on Friday. FirstEnergy Corp. has a 52-week low of $29.98 and a 52-week high of $38.92. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $32.37 and its 200-day moving average is $32.63. The company has a market cap of $13.754 billion and a P/E ratio of 21.46.

FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE:FE) last released its earnings data on Tuesday, August 5th. The company reported $0.49 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters consensus estimate of $0.44 by $0.05. The company had revenue of $3.50 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.32 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.59 earnings per share. Analysts expect that FirstEnergy Corp. will post $2.49 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Monday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Thursday, August 7th will be paid a dividend of $0.36 per share. This represents a $1.44 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.44%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, August 5th.

FirstEnergy Corp. is a holding company. The Company is a diversified energy company operating in three segments: regulated distribution, regulated transmission and competitive energy services segment.

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