Marathon Oil Corporation (MRO) Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report published on Thursday morning.

According to Zacks, “Marathon Oil is a leading energy firm with a large and geographically-diverse reserve base and solid project pipeline. The company has successfully positioned itself into the Delaware Basin and STACK/SCOOP resource plays while exiting the oil sands and conventional assets with limited upside. MRO delivered solid third quarter results on increased production activities especially from the U.S. markets.  Driven by the robust performance, MRO has also raised its production guidance for the full year to 350,000-360,000 BOE/d.  Additionally, the company possesses a healthy balance sheet, which helps it to capitalize on investment opportunities. Marathon Oil displays a strong earnings surprise history on robust growth momentum and strong execution. However, we are concerned of MRO's stuttering Libyan operations along with higher costs and capex  which may affect its near term results. Therefore, we take a cautious stance on the prospects of the stock.”

Several other equities analysts have also recently issued reports on MRO. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a hold rating and set a $14.00 target price on shares of Marathon Oil Corporation in a research note on Thursday, October 19th. Royal Bank Of Canada set a $16.00 target price on Marathon Oil Corporation and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 11th. Scotiabank reissued a buy rating and set a $19.00 target price on shares of Marathon Oil Corporation in a research note on Thursday, August 3rd. Vetr cut Marathon Oil Corporation from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating and set a $14.22 target price on the stock. in a research note on Monday, August 7th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets set a $17.00 target price on Marathon Oil Corporation and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 10th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have issued a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company. Marathon Oil Corporation has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $17.34.

Shares of Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE MRO) traded down $0.16 during trading on Thursday, reaching $15.62. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 11,447,500 shares, compared to its average volume of 13,583,922. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.55, a quick ratio of 2.02 and a current ratio of 2.09. Marathon Oil Corporation has a 1-year low of $10.55 and a 1-year high of $19.28.

Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The oil and gas producer reported ($0.08) EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.14) by $0.06. The business had revenue of $1.25 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.04 billion. Marathon Oil Corporation had a negative return on equity of 3.02% and a negative net margin of 148.07%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 26.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned ($0.23) EPS. equities analysts expect that Marathon Oil Corporation will post -0.4 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, December 11th. Investors of record on Wednesday, November 15th will be given a dividend of $0.05 per share. This represents a $0.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.28%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 14th. Marathon Oil Corporation’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently -2.40%.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Cadence Capital Management LLC increased its position in Marathon Oil Corporation by 58.4% during the third quarter. Cadence Capital Management LLC now owns 32,113 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $435,000 after acquiring an additional 11,835 shares during the last quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group increased its position in Marathon Oil Corporation by 6.0% during the third quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 4,864,742 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $65,820,000 after acquiring an additional 275,775 shares during the last quarter. Kopernik Global Investors LLC increased its position in Marathon Oil Corporation by 9.3% during the third quarter. Kopernik Global Investors LLC now owns 2,518,946 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $34,156,000 after acquiring an additional 214,533 shares during the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc increased its position in Marathon Oil Corporation by 1.1% during the third quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 5,059,400 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $68,590,000 after acquiring an additional 53,417 shares during the last quarter. Finally, ETRADE Capital Management LLC increased its position in Marathon Oil Corporation by 10.9% during the third quarter. ETRADE Capital Management LLC now owns 185,088 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $2,510,000 after acquiring an additional 18,152 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 81.22% of the company’s stock.

About Marathon Oil Corporation

Marathon Oil Corporation is an exploration and production (E&P) company. The Company operates through three segments: North America E&P, International E&P and Oil Sands Mining. The North America E&P segment explores for, produces and markets crude oil and condensate, natural gas liquids (NGLs) and natural gas in North America.

Analyst Recommendations for Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO)

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