Ameren (AEE) Raised to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

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

According to Zacks, “Ameren Corp. is investing heavily to upgrade its aging infrastructure. As of Sep 30, 2017, the company invested $1 billion in its FERC rate-regulated electric transmission and Illinois electric and natural gas distribution businesses. A stable financial position enables Ameren to maximize shareholder value through the payment of regular dividends and repurchase of shares. The company outperformed the broader industry in last 12 months. However, Ameren Corp's aging infrastructure may pose risks to system reliability and force it to incur unplanned capital expenditures and operating costs. Stringent environmental regulations and operational risks might be potential growth deterrents.  Also its stock is overvalued compared to its historical levels in terms of EV/EBITDA ratio.”

Several other equities research analysts have also commented on the company. Bank of America initiated coverage on Ameren in a research note on Tuesday, October 24th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $62.00 price target for the company. Morgan Stanley lowered Ameren from an “equal weight” rating to an “underweight” rating and set a $61.00 price target for the company. in a research note on Wednesday, December 13th. ValuEngine upgraded Ameren from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, November 15th. Finally, KeyCorp reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Ameren in a research note on Friday, October 20th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $56.80.

Shares of Ameren (NYSE AEE) traded down $0.63 during trading hours on Monday, reaching $55.52. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,385,100 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,298,433. The firm has a market capitalization of $13,470.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.03, a PEG ratio of 2.63 and a beta of 0.37. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.92, a current ratio of 0.61 and a quick ratio of 0.40. Ameren has a 12 month low of $51.35 and a 12 month high of $64.89.

Ameren (NYSE:AEE) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, November 3rd. The utilities provider reported $1.24 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.31 by ($0.07). The firm had revenue of $1.72 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.87 billion. Ameren had a return on equity of 8.61% and a net margin of 10.03%. The business’s revenue was down 7.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.52 earnings per share. research analysts predict that Ameren will post 2.8 EPS for the current year.

In other news, SVP Gregory L. Nelson sold 12,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.68, for a total value of $752,160.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 36,785 shares in the company, valued at $2,305,683.80. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. 0.38% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of AEE. Moisand Fitzgerald Tamayo LLC acquired a new stake in Ameren during the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $116,000. Cable Hill Partners LLC grew its stake in Ameren by 400.2% during the 3rd quarter. Cable Hill Partners LLC now owns 2,031 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $117,000 after purchasing an additional 1,625 shares in the last quarter. Acropolis Investment Management LLC grew its stake in Ameren by 101.9% during the 4th quarter. Acropolis Investment Management LLC now owns 3,392 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $200,000 after purchasing an additional 1,712 shares in the last quarter. Seizert Capital Partners LLC acquired a new stake in Ameren during the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $201,000. Finally, Zeke Capital Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Ameren during the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $201,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 70.49% of the company’s stock.

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About Ameren

Ameren Corporation is a utility holding company. The Company’s subsidiaries include Ameren Missouri, Ameren Illinois and Ameren Transmission Company (ATXI). It operates through four segments. The Ameren Missouri segment includes all of the operations of Ameren Missouri. The Ameren Illinois Electric Distribution segment consists of the electric distribution business of Ameren Illinois.

Analyst Recommendations for Ameren (NYSE:AEE)

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