Western Gas Partners, LP (NYSE:WES) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “WESTERN GAS PARTNERS is a growth-oriented Delaware limited partnership formed by Anadarko Petroleum Corporation to own, operate, acquire and develop midstream energy assets. “

Several other research analysts have also recently weighed in on WES. Citigroup Inc boosted their price target on shares of Western Gas Partners, from $55.00 to $61.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Tuesday, April 25th. Guggenheim began coverage on shares of Western Gas Partners, in a report on Monday, April 17th. They set a “buy” rating and a $68.00 price target on the stock. TheStreet upgraded shares of Western Gas Partners, from a “c+” rating to a “b” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 26th. Macquarie began coverage on shares of Western Gas Partners, in a report on Friday, April 21st. They set an “outperform” rating and a $51.00 price target on the stock. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada restated a “buy” rating and set a $69.00 price target on shares of Western Gas Partners, in a report on Friday, April 7th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $62.00.

Analyst Recommendations for Western Gas Partners, (NYSE:WES)

Shares of Western Gas Partners, (NYSE:WES) traded down 0.2054% during midday trading on Thursday, reaching $56.1544. 53,440 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Western Gas Partners, has a 12 month low of $45.12 and a 12 month high of $67.44. The stock has a market cap of $7.95 billion, a P/E ratio of 71.8087 and a beta of 1.18. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $59.31 and a 200-day moving average of $59.38.

Western Gas Partners, (NYSE:WES) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, February 22nd. The pipeline company reported $0.35 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.57 by $0.22. The business had revenue of $510.80 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $472.76 million. Western Gas Partners, had a net margin of 16.62% and a return on equity of 15.69%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 22.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned ($1.60) earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Western Gas Partners, will post $1.92 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 12th. Shareholders of record on Monday, May 1st will be given a $0.875 dividend. This is a positive change from Western Gas Partners,’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.86. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, April 27th. This represents a $3.50 annualized dividend and a yield of 6.22%. Western Gas Partners,’s payout ratio is currently -1,720.00%.

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A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in WES. Morgan Stanley raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Partners, by 23.2% in the third quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 1,530,251 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $84,241,000 after buying an additional 288,593 shares in the last quarter. Brookfield Asset Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Partners, by 79.4% in the fourth quarter. Brookfield Asset Management Inc. now owns 627,908 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $36,896,000 after buying an additional 278,000 shares in the last quarter. UBS Group AG raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Partners, by 27.0% in the third quarter. UBS Group AG now owns 2,223,818 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $122,421,000 after buying an additional 473,388 shares in the last quarter. Pointe Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Partners, by 1.3% in the third quarter. Pointe Capital Management LLC now owns 27,999 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $1,541,000 after buying an additional 370 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Silvercrest Asset Management Group LLC raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Partners, by 2.3% in the fourth quarter. Silvercrest Asset Management Group LLC now owns 169,958 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $9,987,000 after buying an additional 3,862 shares in the last quarter. 52.93% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Western Gas Partners,

Western Gas Partners, LP is a master limited partnership (MLP) that acquires, owns, develops and operates midstream energy assets. The Company is engaged in the business of gathering, processing, compressing, treating and transporting natural gas, condensate, natural gas liquids (NGLs) and crude oil in the United States.

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