Consolidated Edison, Inc. (NYSE:ED) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued to investors on Friday. The brokerage presently has a $92.00 price target on the utilities provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective points to a potential upside of 12.14% from the stock’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Consolidated Edison started 2017 on an impressive note. Both its first quarter earnings as well as revenues comfortably surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimates. Results also improved year over year. Moreover, the company follows a systematic capital investment plan for infrastructure development and reliability projects. In addition, Consolidated Edison focuses on maximizing shareholder value, through both share price appreciation and increased dividend payouts. Evidently, Consolidated Edison's share price outperformed the broader industry price's gain over the last one year. Further, the company is investing steadily to enhance its renewable generation assets, to comply with the Clean Power plan. However, disruption in wholesale energy markets could affect the company’s ability to meet its customers’ energy needs and thereby adversely affect its performance.”

Several other research firms have also recently weighed in on ED. Barclays PLC set a $76.00 target price on shares of Consolidated Edison and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, February 18th. BMO Capital Markets restated a “hold” rating and issued a $80.00 target price on shares of Consolidated Edison in a report on Monday, May 15th. Deutsche Bank AG lowered shares of Consolidated Edison from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $74.00 target price for the company. in a report on Monday, May 8th. Morgan Stanley lifted their price objective on shares of Consolidated Edison from $77.00 to $78.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a report on Monday, May 8th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC decreased their price objective on shares of Consolidated Edison from $82.50 to $81.50 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Tuesday, February 21st. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $76.73.

Analyst Recommendations for Consolidated Edison (NYSE:ED)

Shares of Consolidated Edison (NYSE:ED) traded down 0.15% during trading on Friday, hitting $81.92. 566,902 shares of the stock were exchanged. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $79.33 and its 200 day moving average price is $75.31. Consolidated Edison has a one year low of $68.76 and a one year high of $82.40. The stock has a market cap of $25.02 billion, a PE ratio of 18.87 and a beta of 0.02.

Consolidated Edison (NYSE:ED) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 4th. The utilities provider reported $1.27 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.19 by $0.08. Consolidated Edison had a net margin of 10.06% and a return on equity of 8.94%. The business had revenue of $3.23 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.05 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $1.18 earnings per share. Equities research analysts predict that Consolidated Edison will post $4.09 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 15th. Investors of record on Wednesday, May 17th will be issued a $0.69 dividend. This represents a $2.76 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.36%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, May 15th. Consolidated Edison’s payout ratio is presently 68.32%.

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In related news, Director Linda S. Sanford purchased 900 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 17th. The stock was bought at an average price of $79.74 per share, with a total value of $71,766.00. Following the acquisition, the director now owns 8,748 shares in the company, valued at $697,565.52. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. In the last three months, insiders purchased 981 shares of company stock valued at $78,105. 0.16% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. raised its stake in shares of Consolidated Edison by 1,771.1% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 24,104,499 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,871,955,000 after buying an additional 22,816,233 shares in the last quarter. Norges Bank purchased a new stake in shares of Consolidated Edison during the fourth quarter worth about $242,900,000. Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its stake in shares of Consolidated Edison by 34.1% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 3,478,494 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $270,138,000 after buying an additional 884,788 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp raised its stake in shares of Consolidated Edison by 4.5% in the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 19,885,000 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,465,139,000 after buying an additional 852,401 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in shares of Consolidated Edison by 3.5% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 21,304,464 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,654,504,000 after buying an additional 725,857 shares in the last quarter. 53.92% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Consolidated Edison

Consolidated Edison, Inc (Con Edison) is a holding company. The Company operates through its subsidiaries, which include Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc (CECONY), Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc (O&R), Con Edison Clean Energy Businesses, Inc (the Clean Energy Businesses) and Con Edison Transmission, Inc (Con Edison Transmission).

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