Spark Energy Inc (NASDAQ:SPKE) was downgraded by stock analysts at ValuEngine from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Monday.

Other analysts have also recently issued research reports about the stock. TheStreet raised shares of Spark Energy from a “c” rating to a “b-” rating in a report on Monday, May 8th. Wunderlich increased their price objective on shares of Spark Energy from $22.00 to $27.50 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, June 12th. FBR & Co set a $24.00 price objective on shares of Spark Energy and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, July 10th. Guggenheim raised shares of Spark Energy from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $23.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Friday, July 7th. Finally, Janney Montgomery Scott set a $22.00 price objective on shares of Spark Energy and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, May 23rd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $23.08.

Shares of Spark Energy (NASDAQ SPKE) traded down 0.72% during mid-day trading on Monday, hitting $20.65. 196,354 shares of the stock traded hands. Spark Energy has a 12-month low of $11.52 and a 12-month high of $23.65. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $20.86 and its 200-day moving average price is $17.37. The stock has a market cap of $268.43 million, a P/E ratio of 41.63 and a beta of -1.62.

Spark Energy (NASDAQ:SPKE) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, August 4th. The utilities provider reported $0.01 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.16 by $0.15. Spark Energy had a return on equity of 26.42% and a net margin of 5.86%. The firm had revenue of $151.44 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $135.72 million. Analysts predict that Spark Energy will post $1.24 earnings per share for the current year.

Spark Energy declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback plan on Wednesday, May 24th that authorizes the company to repurchase $50.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the utilities provider to reacquire up to 19.2% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are often a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

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In related news, Director W Keith Maxwell III sold 6,800 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $21.01, for a total value of $142,868.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 689,380 shares in the company, valued at approximately $14,483,873.80. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, CEO Nathan Kroeker sold 21,244 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $43.13, for a total transaction of $916,253.72. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 28,135 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,213,462.55. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders purchased 47,605 shares of company stock valued at $1,815,426 and sold 172,586 shares valued at $4,124,016. Corporate insiders own 66.89% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. American Century Companies Inc. raised its position in shares of Spark Energy by 108.7% in the second quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 1,065,211 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $20,026,000 after buying an additional 554,707 shares in the last quarter. Crow Point Partners LLC raised its position in shares of Spark Energy by 68.1% in the second quarter. Crow Point Partners LLC now owns 1,022,954 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $20,203,000 after buying an additional 414,395 shares in the last quarter. Spark Investment Management LLC raised its position in shares of Spark Energy by 95.3% in the second quarter. Spark Investment Management LLC now owns 507,400 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $9,539,000 after buying an additional 247,600 shares in the last quarter. Peregrine Capital Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Spark Energy during the second quarter worth about $4,237,000. Finally, LSV Asset Management raised its position in shares of Spark Energy by 89.0% in the first quarter. LSV Asset Management now owns 432,346 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $13,813,000 after buying an additional 203,605 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 22.95% of the company’s stock.

About Spark Energy

Spark Energy, Inc is an independent retail energy services company. The Company provides residential and commercial customers across the United States with an alternative choice for their natural gas and electricity. The Company operates through two segments: Retail Natural Gas Segment and Retail Electricity Segment.

To view ValuEngine’s full report, visit ValuEngine’s official website.

Analyst Recommendations for Spark Energy (NASDAQ:SPKE)

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