Avista Corp. (AVA) Cut to Hold at Zacks Investment Research
Avista Corp. (NYSE:AVA) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.
According to Zacks, “Avista Corp. is a diversified energy company with utility and subsidiary operations located throughout North America. Avista Corp. also operates Avista Capital, which owns all the company’s non-regulated energy and non-energy businesses. Avista Capital companies include Avista Energy, Avista Energy Canada, Ltd., Avista Power, Avista Advantage, Avista Labs, Avista Fiber, Avista Communiations, Avista Development and Pentzer Corporation. (PRESS RELEASE) “
Other equities analysts also recently issued research reports about the company. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “hold” rating and set a $42.00 price target on shares of Avista Corp. in a research report on Wednesday, June 22nd. Williams Capital boosted their price objective on Avista Corp. from $38.00 to $40.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, September 22nd.
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Shares of Avista Corp. (NYSE:AVA) traded down 1.56% on Tuesday, hitting $39.11. The stock had a trading volume of 167,719 shares. Avista Corp. has a 12-month low of $32.61 and a 12-month high of $45.22. The firm has a market capitalization of $2.49 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.01 and a beta of 0.40. The company has a 50 day moving average of $41.39 and a 200-day moving average of $41.63.
Avista Corp. (NYSE:AVA) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.43 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.45 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $234.79 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $316.24 million. Avista Corp. had a return on equity of 8.32% and a net margin of 9.38%. Avista Corp.’s quarterly revenue was down 5.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.40 EPS. Equities analysts predict that Avista Corp. will post $2.08 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 15th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, September 1st were issued a dividend of $0.3425 per share. This represents a $1.37 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.50%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, August 30th. Avista Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 64.02%.
In related news, insider Marian M. Durkin sold 3,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $42.56, for a total value of $148,960.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 67,245 shares in the company, valued at $2,861,947.20. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, SVP Jason R. Thackston sold 950 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $40.90, for a total value of $38,855.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 17,232 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $704,788.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.07% of the company’s stock.
Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Hillcrest Asset Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Avista Corp. during the first quarter valued at about $9,180,000. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Avista Corp. by 5.7% in the first quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 37,234 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,519,000 after buying an additional 2,002 shares during the period. Barclays PLC boosted its stake in shares of Avista Corp. by 9.9% in the first quarter. Barclays PLC now owns 36,259 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,450,000 after buying an additional 3,257 shares during the period. A.R.T. Advisors LLC boosted its stake in shares of Avista Corp. by 25.0% in the first quarter. A.R.T. Advisors LLC now owns 14,015 shares of the company’s stock valued at $571,000 after buying an additional 2,800 shares during the period. Finally, AMP Capital Investors Ltd bought a new stake in shares of Avista Corp. during the first quarter valued at about $631,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 68.07% of the company’s stock.
Avista Corp. Company Profile
Avista Corporation is an electric and natural gas utility with certain other business ventures. The Company operates through two business segments: Avista Utilities, and Alaska Electric Light and Power Company (AEL&P). Avista Utilities segment generates, transmits and distributes electricity, and distributes natural gas serving electric and natural gas customers in eastern Washington and northern Idaho and natural gas customers in parts of Oregon.
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