Xcel Energy Inc. (XEL) Upgraded to Buy by Zacks Investment Research
Xcel Energy Inc. (NYSE:XEL) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday. The firm presently has a $44.00 target price on the stock.
According to Zacks, “Xcel Energy’s long-term investment plans will strengthen its operations and help it to serve its expanding customer base in a more reliable and efficient manner. The company is also benefiting from improving economic conditions in its service territories. The company is focused on expanding its renewable generation assets and lowering its carbon footprint. Xcel Energy's operation is subject to stringent environmental legislations which call for additional expenditures and can adversely impact the company's profits. Rising debt levels of Xcel Energy is a concern, with its debt/capital ratio presently higher than the industry average.”
XEL has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Argus reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $48.00 price objective on shares of Xcel Energy in a research report on Monday, September 26th. SunTrust Banks Inc. lifted their price objective on Xcel Energy from $41.00 to $42.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Monday, September 26th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $49.00 price objective on Xcel Energy and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, September 8th. Finally, Jefferies Group lifted their price objective on Xcel Energy from $42.00 to $45.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 4th. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of C$43.25.
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Shares of Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) traded up 1.09% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $39.88. 1,755,605 shares of the stock traded hands. The company has a market cap of $20.26 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.91 and a beta of 0.13. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $41.39 and a 200-day moving average price of $41.94. Xcel Energy has a one year low of $34.33 and a one year high of $45.42.
Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.39 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $2.50 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.52 billion. Xcel Energy had a return on equity of 10.10% and a net margin of 9.92%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down .6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.39 EPS. On average, analysts forecast that Xcel Energy will post $2.20 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, October 20th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, September 15th will be issued a $0.34 dividend. This represents a $1.36 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.45%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, September 13th. Xcel Energy’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 64.46%.
In other news, EVP Marvin E. Jr. Mcdaniel sold 11,900 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of C$41.66, for a total transaction of C$495,754.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 79,404 shares in the company, valued at approximately C$3,307,970.64. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 0.20% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. TLP Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Xcel Energy during the second quarter worth about $116,000. City Holding Co. boosted its stake in shares of Xcel Energy by 1.5% in the second quarter. City Holding Co. now owns 2,776 shares of the company’s stock worth $124,000 after buying an additional 41 shares during the last quarter. Iowa State Bank purchased a new stake in shares of Xcel Energy during the second quarter worth about $125,000. Sharkey Howes & Javer boosted its stake in shares of Xcel Energy by 0.5% in the second quarter. Sharkey Howes & Javer now owns 2,946 shares of the company’s stock worth $132,000 after buying an additional 16 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Hanson McClain Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Xcel Energy by 43.2% in the second quarter. Hanson McClain Inc. now owns 3,018 shares of the company’s stock worth $135,000 after buying an additional 911 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 70.91% of the company’s stock.
Xcel Energy Company Profile
Xcel Energy Inc is a public utility holding company. The Company’s operations include activity of four utility subsidiaries that serve electric and natural gas customers. Its segments are regulated electric utility, regulated natural gas utility and all other. The regulated electric utility segment generates, transmits and distributes electricity in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, North Dakota, South Dakota, Colorado, Texas and New Mexico.
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