Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Statoil ASA (STO) to Sell
Statoil ASA (NYSE:STO) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued on Thursday.
According to Zacks, “The near term prospect for Statoil ASA’s upstream operation seems bleak following the persistent weak commodity prices. Although oil prices has recovered significantly from mid-February lows, a closer look reveals that it is way below the level the commodity was trading in mid-2014. Additionally, OPEC’s September crude production came at a record level, which contradicts the cartel’s pledge to recover oil prices by curbing production in an already over-supplied market. Overall, there might not be any respite to oil prices in the near term that could hinder the company’s upstream business. On top of that, Statoil ASA’s plan to lower 2016 spending for exploration activities may reduce the company’s production. Therefore, we caution investors against this company at this point.”
Several other research firms have also issued reports on STO. Bank of America Corp. raised Statoil ASA from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, July 15th. Morgan Stanley lowered Statoil ASA from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 21st. Societe Generale raised Statoil ASA from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 6th. Deutsche Bank AG lowered Statoil ASA from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $16.43 to $16.64 in a research report on Tuesday, June 21st. Finally, HSBC raised Statoil ASA from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, September 7th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $15.53.
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Shares of Statoil ASA (NYSE:STO) traded down 1.274% during trading on Thursday, reaching $16.655. 815,599 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. Statoil ASA has a 12 month low of $10.89 and a 12 month high of $17.94. The firm’s market cap is $52.98 billion. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $16.04 and a 200 day moving average price of $16.31.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 16th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, November 3rd will be paid a dividend of $0.2201 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 1st. This represents a $0.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 5.22%. Statoil ASA’s dividend payout ratio is currently -229.72%.
Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in STO. TPH Asset Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Statoil ASA during the first quarter worth about $5,244,000. Renaissance Technologies LLC increased its position in shares of Statoil ASA by 68.9% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 3,018,400 shares of the company’s stock worth $46,966,000 after buying an additional 1,231,200 shares during the period. OLD Mission Capital LLC increased its position in shares of Statoil ASA by 19.8% in the first quarter. OLD Mission Capital LLC now owns 880,543 shares of the company’s stock worth $13,701,000 after buying an additional 145,301 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its position in shares of Statoil ASA by 57.6% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 19,677 shares of the company’s stock worth $306,000 after buying an additional 7,195 shares during the period. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Statoil ASA by 12.2% in the first quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 532,977 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,293,000 after buying an additional 57,795 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 5.33% of the company’s stock.
Statoil ASA Company Profile
Statoil ASA is an energy company, engaged in oil and gas exploration and production activities. The Company’s segments include Development and Production Norway (DPN), Development and Production USA (DPUSA), Development and Production International (DPI), Marketing, Midstream and Processing (MMP), New Energy Solutions (NES), and Other.
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