Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Western Gas Equity Partners (NYSE:WGP) to Sell

Western Gas Equity Partners (NYSE:WGP) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a note issued to investors on Saturday, January 13th.

According to Zacks, “Western Gas Equity Partners, LP is formed to own, operate, acquire and develop midstream energy assets. Western Gas Equity Partners, LP is based in The Woodlands, Texas. “

A number of other analysts also recently weighed in on the stock. Bank of America began coverage on shares of Western Gas Equity Partners in a research report on Tuesday, January 9th. They set a “neutral” rating for the company. Credit Suisse Group initiated coverage on shares of Western Gas Equity Partners in a report on Thursday, January 4th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $49.00 price objective for the company. UBS Group raised shares of Western Gas Equity Partners from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $44.00 price objective for the company in a report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Morgan Stanley decreased their price objective on shares of Western Gas Equity Partners from $45.00 to $40.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a report on Thursday, November 2nd. Finally, Scotiabank reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $51.00 price objective on shares of Western Gas Equity Partners in a report on Wednesday, October 25th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $48.58.

Western Gas Equity Partners (NYSE WGP) traded down $0.72 on Friday, hitting $38.83. 157,006 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 180,571. Western Gas Equity Partners has a 12 month low of $33.92 and a 12 month high of $47.82. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.84, a current ratio of 0.91 and a quick ratio of 0.91. The stock has a market capitalization of $8,658.80, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.97 and a beta of 1.45.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Neuberger Berman Group LLC raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Equity Partners by 3.1% during the third quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 11,536,740 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $475,083,000 after purchasing an additional 343,660 shares in the last quarter. Cohen & Steers Inc. raised its position in Western Gas Equity Partners by 4.8% in the third quarter. Cohen & Steers Inc. now owns 148,844 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $6,129,000 after acquiring an additional 6,792 shares in the last quarter. Dividend Assets Capital LLC raised its position in Western Gas Equity Partners by 1.1% in the third quarter. Dividend Assets Capital LLC now owns 337,784 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $13,910,000 after acquiring an additional 3,512 shares in the last quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS raised its position in Western Gas Equity Partners by 1.6% in the third quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 867,019 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $35,704,000 after acquiring an additional 13,337 shares in the last quarter. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised its position in Western Gas Equity Partners by 152.6% in the third quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 71,778 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $2,960,000 after acquiring an additional 43,364 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 18.50% of the company’s stock.

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About Western Gas Equity Partners

Western Gas Equity Partners, LP is a limited partnership. The Company is formed to own approximately three types of partnership interests in Western Gas Partners, LP (WES). WES is an master limited partnership (MLP) engaged in the business of gathering, compressing, treating, processing and transporting natural gas, and gathering, stabilizing and transporting condensate, natural gas liquids (NGLs) and crude oil.

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