Noble Corporation (NYSE:NE) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Noble Corporation’s robust portfolio of assets, long-term commitments and strong backlog offer some relief in the currently weak pricing scenario.  What's more, Noble continues to benefit from its ability to land contract extensions even in a weak market. Moreover, the company’s continuous endeavors to upgrade its fleet will prove beneficial in the existing tough market conditions. However, the driller’s three-month pricing chart reveals Noble underperformed the drilling industry. The company’s high level of debt is another concern.”

Other analysts have also recently issued reports about the stock. Jefferies Group LLC set a $7.00 price objective on shares of Noble Corporation and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Saturday, July 1st. UBS AG upgraded shares of Noble Corporation from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price objective for the stock from $4.00 to $6.00 in a research note on Monday, September 25th. HSBC Holdings plc started coverage on shares of Noble Corporation in a research note on Thursday. They issued a “buy” rating and a $5.30 price objective for the company. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $4.00 price objective on shares of Noble Corporation and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, August 7th. Finally, Societe Generale cut shares of Noble Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, August 7th. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have assigned a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $5.56.

Noble Corporation (NYSE NE) traded down 0.132% during midday trading on Monday, hitting $3.775. 1,433,891 shares of the stock traded hands. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $4.02 and a 200-day moving average price of $4.15. The firm’s market cap is $924.51 million. Noble Corporation has a 1-year low of $3.14 and a 1-year high of $8.37.

Noble Corporation (NYSE:NE) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The oil and gas company reported ($0.31) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.33) by $0.02. Noble Corporation had a negative net margin of 122.04% and a negative return on equity of 3.19%. The firm had revenue of $278.10 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $284.99 million. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.01 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was down 68.9% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts predict that Noble Corporation will post ($1.24) EPS for the current year.

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Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Teacher Retirement System of Texas lifted its position in Noble Corporation by 16.8% during the 1st quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 19,601 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock worth $121,000 after buying an additional 2,816 shares in the last quarter. HighTower Advisors LLC acquired a new position in Noble Corporation during the 1st quarter worth about $139,000. Founders Capital Management lifted its position in Noble Corporation by 95.9% during the 2nd quarter. Founders Capital Management now owns 30,270 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock worth $110,000 after buying an additional 14,820 shares in the last quarter. Tudor Investment Corp ET AL lifted its position in Noble Corporation by 126.1% during the 1st quarter. Tudor Investment Corp ET AL now owns 30,300 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock worth $188,000 after buying an additional 16,900 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Advantus Capital Management Inc lifted its position in Noble Corporation by 3.6% during the 1st quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc now owns 31,328 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock worth $194,000 after buying an additional 1,098 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 95.45% of the company’s stock.

About Noble Corporation

Noble Corporation is an offshore drilling contractor for the oil and gas industry. The Company performs contract drilling services with its fleet of 79 mobile offshore drilling units and one floating production storage and offloading unit (NYSE:NE) located globally.

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Analyst Recommendations for Noble Corporation (NYSE:NE)

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