ENSCO PLC (NYSE:ESV) was downgraded by investment analysts at Seaport Global Securities from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued on Wednesday, Marketbeat Ratings reports. They presently have a $4.00 price objective on the offshore drilling services provider’s stock, down from their previous price objective of $6.50. Seaport Global Securities’ target price indicates a potential downside of 25.37% from the stock’s previous close.

ESV has been the subject of a number of other reports. Evercore ISI raised their target price on ENSCO PLC from $13.00 to $14.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, March 3rd. Credit Suisse Group set a $15.00 target price on ENSCO PLC and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, February 28th. Jefferies Group LLC lowered their target price on ENSCO PLC from $12.00 to $11.50 and set a “hold” rating for the company in a report on Wednesday, March 1st. Barclays PLC restated a “sell” rating and set a $8.00 target price on shares of ENSCO PLC in a report on Thursday, April 27th. Finally, BidaskClub upgraded ENSCO PLC from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 14th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the stock. ENSCO PLC currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $10.53.

Analyst Recommendations for ENSCO PLC (NYSE:ESV)

Shares of ENSCO PLC (ESV) traded up 5.30% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $5.36. 51,785,264 shares of the stock were exchanged. The stock has a market cap of $1.63 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 2.35 and a beta of 1.64. ENSCO PLC has a 12 month low of $5.05 and a 12 month high of $12.04. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $6.83 and a 200-day moving average price of $9.08.

ENSCO PLC (NYSE:ESV) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, April 27th. The offshore drilling services provider reported ($0.04) EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.10) by $0.06. ENSCO PLC had a return on equity of 3.07% and a net margin of 28.32%. The company had revenue of $471.10 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $468.78 million. Equities analysts expect that ENSCO PLC will post ($0.23) earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 16th. Shareholders of record on Monday, June 5th were given a dividend of $0.01 per share. This represents a $0.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.75%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, June 1st. ENSCO PLC’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 1.69%.

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Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in ENSCO PLC by 10,624.9% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 26,164,554 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $234,173,000 after buying an additional 25,920,593 shares during the period. FMR LLC raised its position in ENSCO PLC by 969.0% in the first quarter. FMR LLC now owns 14,705,005 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $131,610,000 after buying an additional 13,329,369 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its position in ENSCO PLC by 6.8% in the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 13,190,556 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $128,208,000 after buying an additional 840,523 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position in ENSCO PLC by 657.6% in the first quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 6,206,197 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $55,544,000 after buying an additional 5,387,049 shares during the period. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its position in ENSCO PLC by 7.3% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 5,559,625 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $49,758,000 after buying an additional 376,733 shares during the period. 91.74% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About ENSCO PLC

Ensco plc is an offshore contract drilling company. The Company provides offshore contract drilling services to the international oil and gas industry. Its segments include Floaters, Jackups and Other. The Floaters segment includes its drillships and semisubmersible rigs, and provides contract drilling.

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