Zacks Investment Research Lowers Weatherford International (WFT) to Sell

Weatherford International (NYSE:WFT) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report issued on Sunday.

According to Zacks, “Weatherford International Ltd.’s price chart underperformed the broader market indices over the last year. The company’s debt-heavy balance sheet and inadequate cash balances are other concerns. The debt increased by nearly 30% during 2016 with little sign of reduction during the 2017 so far. Further, cash balance plunged by over 43% so far this year. This reflects the weakness of its balance sheet. Moreover, the credit ratings of the company’s bonds were downgraded by multiple credit rating agencies in 2016.  Given high debt load and weak credit ratings we think that Weatherford might face difficulties in generating debt capital for financing future growth projects. Volatile gas prices also remain a drag. Under these headwinds, we expect shares of Weatherford to be under pressure in the near future.”

A number of other analysts have also recently commented on the company. Morgan Stanley dropped their price target on Weatherford International from $5.50 to $5.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, November 2nd. Sanford C. Bernstein raised Weatherford International from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, November 3rd. Citigroup cut Weatherford International from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $4.20 price target on the stock. in a research report on Monday, November 6th. Jefferies Group set a $5.00 price target on Weatherford International and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 5th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada set a $5.00 price objective on Weatherford International and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 21st. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating, nineteen have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $5.77.

Shares of Weatherford International (WFT) opened at $4.05 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 5.44, a current ratio of 2.04 and a quick ratio of 1.33. Weatherford International has a 12-month low of $3.08 and a 12-month high of $7.09. The company has a market capitalization of $3,930.00, a P/E ratio of -2.83 and a beta of 2.32.

Weatherford International (NYSE:WFT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The oil and gas company reported ($0.22) EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.24) by $0.02. Weatherford International had a negative return on equity of 67.44% and a negative net margin of 25.36%. The firm had revenue of $1.46 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.49 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted ($0.39) EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.1% compared to the same quarter last year. research analysts predict that Weatherford International will post -1.02 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Weatherford International news, VP Douglas M. Mills sold 15,223 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, January 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $4.07, for a total transaction of $61,957.61. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 256,402 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,043,556.14. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, VP Douglas M. Mills sold 7,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, December 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $3.75, for a total transaction of $28,125.00. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 271,625 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,018,593.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.16% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. State of Alaska Department of Revenue purchased a new stake in Weatherford International during the 4th quarter valued at $216,000. Factory Mutual Insurance Co. raised its stake in Weatherford International by 11.6% during the 4th quarter. Factory Mutual Insurance Co. now owns 3,369,700 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $14,052,000 after buying an additional 350,000 shares during the last quarter. Balentine LLC raised its stake in Weatherford International by 68.5% during the 3rd quarter. Balentine LLC now owns 36,706 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $168,000 after buying an additional 14,922 shares during the last quarter. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC raised its stake in Weatherford International by 40.6% during the 3rd quarter. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC now owns 447,470 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $2,049,000 after buying an additional 129,121 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Janus Henderson Group PLC raised its stake in Weatherford International by 61.0% during the 3rd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 191,986 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $880,000 after buying an additional 72,741 shares during the last quarter.

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Weatherford International Company Profile

Weatherford International Ltd. (Weatherford) is one of the largest multinational oilfield service companies providing innovative solutions, technology and services to the oil and gas industry. The Company operates in over 90 countries and has a network of approximately 860 locations, including manufacturing, service, research and development, and training facilities and employs approximately 29,500 people.

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