FirstEnergy (FE) Raised to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “FirstEnergy’s modernization drive and its ambitious Energizing the Future plan is processing well and is aimed at upgrading its transmission capabilities. Recently, the company completed inspection of its assets and went ahead with necessary maintenance work of its equipment before the upcoming winter. The company is working to transform itself into a regulated company by mid of 2018. FirstEnergy's transformational investment will help to strengthen its balance sheet by lowering existing debts. However, FirstEnergy faces strong competition in the wholesale market, risk of unplanned outages and stringent regulatory norms are some of the headwinds.  Shares of FirstEnergy's have lost its value compared with the industry’s gain in the last one year.”

Other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. ValuEngine raised FirstEnergy from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, October 2nd. Guggenheim reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $47.00 price objective on shares of FirstEnergy in a research note on Wednesday, January 3rd. Deutsche Bank raised FirstEnergy from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 17th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $34.00 price objective on FirstEnergy and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 12th. Finally, KeyCorp reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of FirstEnergy in a research note on Friday, October 20th. Eleven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $35.32.

Shares of FirstEnergy (FE) traded down $0.45 during trading on Tuesday, hitting $32.00. The company had a trading volume of 17,914,380 shares, compared to its average volume of 5,140,000. The company has a current ratio of 0.69, a quick ratio of 0.56 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 3.29. FirstEnergy has a twelve month low of $27.93 and a twelve month high of $35.22. The firm has a market capitalization of $14,240.00, a PE ratio of -2.72 and a beta of 0.25.

FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The utilities provider reported $0.97 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.86 by $0.11. FirstEnergy had a positive return on equity of 19.29% and a negative net margin of 35.99%. The business had revenue of $3.70 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.72 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.90 earnings per share. research analysts predict that FirstEnergy will post 3.04 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. James Investment Research Inc. bought a new position in FirstEnergy during the fourth quarter worth about $1,559,000. Strs Ohio lifted its holdings in FirstEnergy by 3.6% during the fourth quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 50,821 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,556,000 after acquiring an additional 1,746 shares in the last quarter. Bowling Portfolio Management LLC lifted its holdings in FirstEnergy by 39.0% during the fourth quarter. Bowling Portfolio Management LLC now owns 120,625 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $3,694,000 after acquiring an additional 33,855 shares in the last quarter. Steward Partners Investment Advisory LLC lifted its holdings in FirstEnergy by 352.4% during the fourth quarter. Steward Partners Investment Advisory LLC now owns 8,673 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $265,000 after acquiring an additional 6,756 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue lifted its holdings in shares of FirstEnergy by 62.0% in the fourth quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 76,218 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $2,333,000 after purchasing an additional 29,157 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 82.44% of the company’s stock.

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FirstEnergy Company Profile

FirstEnergy Corp. is a holding company. The Company is engaged in holding, directly or indirectly, all of the outstanding equity of its principal subsidiaries. Its segments include Regulated Distribution, Regulated Transmission, Competitive Energy Services (CES) and Corporate/Other. As of December 31, 2016, the Regulated Distribution segment distributed electricity through the Company’s 10 utility operating companies, serving approximately six million customers, and purchased power for its provider of last resort (POLR), standard offer service (SOS), standard offer service (SSO) and default service requirements in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland.

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