The AES Corporation (NYSE:AES) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Thursday. The firm presently has a $13.00 price target on the utilities provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s target price indicates a potential upside of 18.07% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “AES Corp. reported better-than-expected results on both top and bottom line fronts in the second quarter of 2017. Results were impressive year over year as well. AES Corp continues to streamline its portfolio through asset divestments and by exiting markets and businesses where it does not have or cannot develop a competitive advantage. The company’s strategy of reducing complexity through withdrawal of operations in the risk markets is appreciable. Further, its efforts to expand the generation business and renewable assets could drive growth going forward. The company also holds a strong liquidity position, which allowed management to make a promise of 10% growth in dividend, every year. However, commodity price volatility, stringent environmental regulations, and political and operational risks continue to pose challenges for the stock.”

AES has been the topic of several other research reports. BidaskClub downgraded shares of The AES Corporation from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Saturday, June 24th. ValuEngine raised shares of The AES Corporation from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 25th. Finally, Morgan Stanley reissued an “equal weight” rating on shares of The AES Corporation in a report on Monday, July 10th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $12.00.

The AES Corporation (NYSE AES) traded down 1.52% during mid-day trading on Thursday, reaching $11.01. 3,812,050 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. The company’s market cap is $7.27 billion. The AES Corporation has a 12-month low of $10.60 and a 12-month high of $13.32. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $11.12 and a 200 day moving average of $11.36.

The AES Corporation (NYSE:AES) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, August 8th. The utilities provider reported $0.25 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.04. The AES Corporation had a negative net margin of 5.30% and a positive return on equity of 15.86%. The firm had revenue of $3.47 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.97 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.17 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 7.5% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts predict that The AES Corporation will post $1.05 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in The AES Corporation by 5,080.9% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 68,829,027 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $769,510,000 after buying an additional 67,500,500 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in The AES Corporation by 4.6% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 77,076,177 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $861,713,000 after buying an additional 3,406,863 shares during the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its stake in The AES Corporation by 29.1% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 11,702,896 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $130,838,000 after buying an additional 2,638,095 shares during the last quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. increased its stake in The AES Corporation by 28.1% in the first quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 9,761,070 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $109,129,000 after buying an additional 2,142,100 shares during the last quarter. Finally, CHURCHILL MANAGEMENT Corp acquired a new stake in The AES Corporation during the second quarter worth about $20,890,000. 93.49% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About The AES Corporation

The AES Corporation is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries and affiliates, operates a diversified portfolio of electricity generation and distribution businesses. It is organized into six strategic business units (SBUs): the United States; Andes; Brazil; Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean (MCAC); Europe, and Asia.

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