Traders Buy High Volume of Ameren Put Options (AEE)

Ameren Corp (NYSE:AEE) was the target of unusually large options trading on Wednesday. Stock investors purchased 1,203 put options on the company. This represents an increase of approximately 1,696% compared to the typical volume of 67 put options.

Several research firms recently commented on AEE. Morgan Stanley reduced their price target on Ameren from $61.00 to $57.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, June 13th. Goldman Sachs Group reissued a “neutral” rating on shares of Ameren in a research report on Friday, June 1st. Zacks Investment Research raised Ameren from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $66.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, May 29th. UBS Group raised Ameren from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $63.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Monday, April 2nd. Finally, Gabelli began coverage on Ameren in a research report on Tuesday, March 27th. They set a “buy” rating and a $66.00 price target on the stock. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, three have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $62.50.

In other news, SVP Mark C. Birk sold 3,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $56.21, for a total transaction of $196,735.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 51,250 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,880,762.50. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, SVP Mark C. Lindgren sold 5,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $58.68, for a total value of $322,740.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 24,275 shares in the company, valued at $1,424,457. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 12,000 shares of company stock valued at $689,455 in the last quarter. Company insiders own 0.44% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in AEE. Millennium Management LLC raised its position in shares of Ameren by 178.9% in the 1st quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 5,519,198 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $312,552,000 after purchasing an additional 3,540,226 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC raised its position in shares of Ameren by 25.7% in the 4th quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 3,180,400 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $187,612,000 after purchasing an additional 650,200 shares in the last quarter. Zimmer Partners LP acquired a new position in shares of Ameren in the 1st quarter valued at approximately $31,515,000. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale raised its position in shares of Ameren by 49.9% in the 1st quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale now owns 837,886 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $46,951,000 after purchasing an additional 278,810 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Mackay Shields LLC acquired a new position in shares of Ameren in the 1st quarter valued at approximately $13,922,000. 69.62% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Ameren stock opened at $60.84 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $14.60 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.50, a P/E/G ratio of 3.01 and a beta of 0.27. The company has a current ratio of 0.47, a quick ratio of 0.33 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.92. Ameren has a one year low of $51.89 and a one year high of $64.89.

Ameren (NYSE:AEE) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 9th. The utilities provider reported $0.62 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.04. Ameren had a return on equity of 10.04% and a net margin of 9.15%. The firm had revenue of $1.59 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.55 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.42 EPS. Ameren’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.6% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts expect that Ameren will post 3.04 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 29th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, June 13th will be given a $0.4575 dividend. This represents a $1.83 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.01%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, June 12th. Ameren’s payout ratio is 64.66%.

Ameren Company Profile

Ameren Corporation operates as a public utility holding company in the United States. It operates through four segments: Ameren Missouri, Ameren Illinois Electric Distribution, Ameren Illinois Natural Gas, and Ameren Transmission. The company engages in the rate-regulated electric generation, transmission, and distribution activities; and rate-regulated natural gas distribution and transmission businesses.

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