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Loews (NYSE:L) was upgraded by Zacks from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report released on Thursday. The firm currently has a $46.00 price target on the stock. Zacks‘s target price would indicate a potential upside of 5.65% from the company’s current price.

Zacks’ analyst wrote, “We are upgrading Loews to Neutral from Underperform on favorable second quarter results wherein earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate as well as year-ago earnings. The quarter witnessed higher earnings at CNA Financial and an increase in parent company investment income driven by improved performance of the trading portfolio. However, lower earnings at Diamond Offshore limited the upside. Loews remains on track to strengthen its hotel business by doubling its hotel count within the next two to four years and expects to triple its net income by 2015. Though Diamond Offshore continues to improve its fleet, a weakening ultra-deepwater and deepwater market will dampen results. Boardwalk remains on track to expand existing pipeline infrastructure as market condition improves. The acquisitions of HP Storage and Louisiana Midstream support its strategy to focus on diversification, to become less dependent on its base gas transportation business. A strong balance sheet with low leverage and adequate cash and strong rating scores are among the positives. “

In other Loews news, Director Paul J. Fribourg unloaded 1,500 shares of Loews stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $43.53, for a total transaction of $65,295.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link.

Loews (NYSE:L) remained flat at $43.54 during trading on Thursday. 411,286 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Loews has a 52 week low of $41.57 and a 52 week high of $49.43. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $43.02 and a 200-day moving average of $43.5. The company has a market cap of $16.593 billion and a P/E ratio of 65.47.

Loews (NYSE:L) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Monday, August 4th. The company reported $0.79 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the analysts’ consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.11. The company had revenue of $3.61 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.63 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.69 earnings per share. Analysts expect that Loews will post $2.90 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Friday, September 12th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 29th will be paid a dividend of $0.0625 per share. This represents a $0.25 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.57%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 27th.

Loews Corporation is a holding company. Its subsidiaries are engaged in commercial property and casualty insurance, operation of offshore oil and gas drilling rigs, exploration, production and marketing of natural gas and oil (NYSE:L), interstate transportation and storage of natural gas and operation of hotels.

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