Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Duke Energy’s hefty investment plans for the next five years is expected to improve its business by generating cleaner energy and bolstering its renewable asset base. Moreover, its focus on core domestic regulated and highly-contracted renewable business, stable financial position and streamlining of its portfolio will bode well, going forward. On the flip side, potential volatility in market prices of fuel, electricity and other renewable energy commodities could create operational risks. Unfavorable supply costs for providing full energy and capacity requirement services might have an undesirable impact on the company’s earnings as well. Moreover the company has underperformed its broader industry in the last 12 months.”

DUK has been the topic of a number of other reports. Guggenheim reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $96.00 price target on shares of Duke Energy in a research report on Wednesday, January 3rd. SunTrust Banks reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $87.00 target price on shares of Duke Energy in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. Goldman Sachs Group downgraded Duke Energy from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and upped their target price for the company from $80.11 to $88.00 in a research report on Wednesday, January 10th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their target price on Duke Energy from $83.00 to $89.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 12th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $87.00 target price on shares of Duke Energy in a research report on Tuesday, November 7th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have given a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $87.48.

Duke Energy (DUK) opened at $78.90 on Monday. The stock has a market capitalization of $55,228.07, a price-to-earnings ratio of 26.04, a PEG ratio of 4.08 and a beta of 0.26. The company has a current ratio of 0.71, a quick ratio of 0.41 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.17. Duke Energy has a 12-month low of $76.28 and a 12-month high of $91.80.

Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, November 3rd. The utilities provider reported $1.59 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.56 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $6.48 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $7.43 billion. Duke Energy had a return on equity of 7.54% and a net margin of 9.09%. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.68 earnings per share. equities research analysts anticipate that Duke Energy will post 4.56 EPS for the current year.

In other Duke Energy news, EVP Lloyd M. Yates sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $89.95, for a total transaction of $449,750.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. 0.07% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in DUK. Financial Advisory Service Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Duke Energy by 0.3% during the 2nd quarter. Financial Advisory Service Inc. now owns 6,722 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $562,000 after acquiring an additional 17 shares in the last quarter. Hodges Capital Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Duke Energy by 0.3% during the 2nd quarter. Hodges Capital Management Inc. now owns 7,105 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $594,000 after acquiring an additional 19 shares in the last quarter. Accredited Investors Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Duke Energy by 0.7% during the 2nd quarter. Accredited Investors Inc. now owns 2,806 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $235,000 after acquiring an additional 19 shares in the last quarter. Hudock Capital Group LLC boosted its stake in shares of Duke Energy by 0.3% during the 2nd quarter. Hudock Capital Group LLC now owns 8,370 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $699,000 after acquiring an additional 24 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Shoker Investment Counsel Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Duke Energy by 0.6% during the 2nd quarter. Shoker Investment Counsel Inc. now owns 4,512 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $377,000 after acquiring an additional 28 shares in the last quarter. 57.26% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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About Duke Energy

Duke Energy Corporation (Duke Energy) is an energy company. The Company operates through three segments: Electric Utilities and Infrastructure; Gas Utilities and Infrastructure, and Commercial Renewables. The Company operates in the United States through its direct and indirect subsidiaries. The Electric Utilities and Infrastructure segment provides retail electric service through the generation, transmission, distribution and sale of electricity to approximately 7.5 million customers within the Southeast and Midwest regions of the United States.

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