Analysts at Morgan Stanley began coverage on shares of Range Resources Corp. (NYSE:RRC) in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday. The firm set an “equal weight” rating and a $45.00 price target on the oil and gas exploration company’s stock. Morgan Stanley’s price objective suggests a potential upside of 21.13% from the company’s current price.

The analysts wrote, “We see significant upside if gas and NGL prices rebound, balanced by greater balance sheet risk than peers if commodity prices remain weak in 2017,” analyst Drew Venker wrote in a note. “We see relatively balanced risk-reward for Range net of the balance sheet improvement: the stock offers deep NAV upside, but downside is greater than many of its Appalachia peers due to its higher leverage and premium multiple,” Venker continued. Resource Potential And RiskMeanwhile, the analyst noted that Memorial’s Louisiana assets have large resource potential, but greater risk than the Marcellus as much of the acreage position is untested — versus the Marcellus, which has been extensively drilled and is fully delineated.After the Memorial deal, Venker expects Range’s YE-2017 leverage to remain above peers on his strip price deck at 3.7x net debt to EBITDA vs. the Marcellus-Utica peers at 2.0x.”If gas and NGL prices remain subdued next year, balance sheet concerns could quickly become investors’ primary concern on RRC. However, in a higher price environment in 2017, any remaining leverage concerns will quickly dissipate,”

RRC has been the topic of several other reports. Jefferies Group set a $50.00 price objective on Range Resources Corp. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, September 9th. BMO Capital Markets cut Range Resources Corp. from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 29th. Cantor Fitzgerald restated a “neutral” rating on shares of Range Resources Corp. in a research note on Thursday, June 2nd. Vetr upgraded Range Resources Corp. from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $40.37 price objective on the stock in a research note on Thursday, May 26th. Finally, KLR Group upgraded Range Resources Corp. from an “accumulate” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $53.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Thursday, July 28th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have assigned a hold rating, fourteen have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. Range Resources Corp. currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $44.56.

Analyst Recommendations for Range Resources Corp. (NYSE:RRC)

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Range Resources Corp. (NYSE:RRC) opened at 37.15 on Tuesday. Range Resources Corp. has a 12-month low of $19.21 and a 12-month high of $46.96. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $39.91 and a 200 day moving average of $39.67. The firm’s market capitalization is $6.19 billion.

Range Resources Corp. (NYSE:RRC) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The oil and gas exploration company reported ($0.14) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of ($0.21) by $0.07. Range Resources Corp. had a negative net margin of 71.00% and a negative return on equity of 14.57%. The business earned $362.67 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $327.40 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.01 EPS. Range Resources Corp.’s revenue was down 10.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts forecast that Range Resources Corp. will post ($0.27) EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 30th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 16th will be issued a $0.02 dividend. This represents a $0.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.22%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 14th. Range Resources Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is -1.42%.

In other Range Resources Corp. news, COO Ray N. Walker, Jr. sold 13,350 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $37.53, for a total value of $501,025.50. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 42,598 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,598,702.94. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 2.40% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. increased its position in Range Resources Corp. by 49.5% in the second quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 2,322 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock worth $100,000 after buying an additional 769 shares in the last quarter. SevenBridge Financial Group LLC bought a new position in Range Resources Corp. during the second quarter valued at approximately $115,000. AXA increased its position in Range Resources Corp. by 26.4% in the first quarter. AXA now owns 3,128 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $101,000 after buying an additional 653 shares during the period. Euclid Advisors LLC bought a new position in Range Resources Corp. during the second quarter valued at approximately $170,000. Finally, Stephens Inc. AR increased its position in Range Resources Corp. by 24.9% in the second quarter. Stephens Inc. AR now owns 4,049 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $175,000 after buying an additional 808 shares during the period.

Range Resources Corp. Company Profile

Range Resources Corporation is an independent natural gas, natural gas liquids (NGLs) and oil company. The Company operates through the exploration and production of natural gas, NGLs and oil in the United States segment. The Company is engaged in the exploration, development and acquisition of natural gas and oil properties, focused in the Appalachian region of the United States.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:RRC

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