Enerplus (NYSE:ERF) Sees Large Volume Increase

Enerplus Co. (NYSE:ERF) (TSE:ERF) saw unusually-high trading volume on Thursday . Approximately 63,812 shares traded hands during trading, a decline of 97% from the previous session’s volume of 2,243,339 shares.The stock last traded at $4.86 and had previously closed at $4.90.

ERF has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Enerplus from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, February 22nd. TD Securities boosted their price objective on shares of Enerplus from $6.00 to $7.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, February 22nd. Desjardins downgraded shares of Enerplus from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 25th. Royal Bank of Canada upped their target price on shares of Enerplus from $6.00 to $8.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, February 22nd. Finally, Scotiabank upped their target price on shares of Enerplus from $4.50 to $5.75 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, January 14th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $6.25.

The company has a current ratio of 0.59, a quick ratio of 0.59 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.53. The firm has a market cap of $1.29 billion, a P/E ratio of -1.29 and a beta of 3.18. The company’s 50 day simple moving average is $5.13 and its 200-day simple moving average is $3.36.

Enerplus (NYSE:ERF) (TSE:ERF) last posted its earnings results on Friday, February 19th. The oil and natural gas company reported $0.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.07 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $149.72 million for the quarter. Enerplus had a negative net margin of 130.21% and a positive return on equity of 2.91%. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Enerplus Co. will post 0.08 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a monthly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, April 15th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, March 31st will be given a dividend of $0.008 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, March 30th. This represents a $0.10 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.91%. This is a positive change from Enerplus’s previous monthly dividend of $0.01. Enerplus’s dividend payout ratio is presently 8.86%.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased its position in shares of Enerplus by 44,460.9% during the 4th quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 314,154 shares of the oil and natural gas company’s stock valued at $983,000 after purchasing an additional 313,449 shares during the last quarter. Cetera Advisors LLC increased its holdings in Enerplus by 9.0% in the 4th quarter. Cetera Advisors LLC now owns 180,800 shares of the oil and natural gas company’s stock worth $566,000 after acquiring an additional 14,896 shares in the last quarter. Paloma Partners Management Co purchased a new stake in Enerplus in the 4th quarter worth approximately $65,000. BCJ Capital Management LLC increased its holdings in Enerplus by 21.1% in the 4th quarter. BCJ Capital Management LLC now owns 22,532 shares of the oil and natural gas company’s stock worth $71,000 after acquiring an additional 3,930 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Wolverine Trading LLC purchased a new stake in Enerplus in the 4th quarter worth approximately $46,000. 50.95% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Enerplus Company Profile (NYSE:ERF)

Enerplus Corporation, together with subsidiaries, engages in the exploration and development of crude oil and natural gas in the United States and Canada. The company's oil and natural gas properties are located primarily in North Dakota, Montana, Colorado, and Pennsylvania; and Alberta, British Columbia, and Saskatchewan.

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