NRG Energy (NYSE:NRG) Upgraded to “Buy” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of NRG Energy (NYSE:NRG) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report sent to investors on Tuesday, Zacks.com reports. The brokerage currently has $38.00 target price on the utilities provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “In the second quarter, NRG Energy reported lower-than-expected earnings. However, revenues increased on a year-over-year basis. NRG Energy is on track to gain from proper execution of the Transformation Plan. The acquisition of Stream Energy and solar PPA of nearly 1.3 gigawatts will enable the company to perfect its integrated platform. The company continues to sell electricity to a wide variety of customers, which insulates it and lowers the impact of customer migration. In the past month, NRG Energy’s shares have outperformed the industry. However, the company is subject to stringent environmental regulations and intense competition in wholesale power markets. Many facilities operated by the company are old and require periodic upgrades. Also, the possibility of unplanned outages that can dent production can’t be ruled out.”

A number of other brokerages have also weighed in on NRG. ValuEngine lowered NRG Energy from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Thursday, August 1st. Morgan Stanley set a $47.00 price target on NRG Energy and gave the stock a hold rating in a research note on Friday, August 16th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group raised NRG Energy from a buy rating to a conviction-buy rating and set a $56.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Monday, June 24th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, four have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. NRG Energy currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $44.88.

Shares of NRG Energy stock opened at $35.02 on Tuesday. NRG Energy has a fifty-two week low of $32.63 and a fifty-two week high of $43.66. The firm has a market cap of $8.93 billion, a PE ratio of 14.53, a P/E/G ratio of 0.24 and a beta of 0.79. The business’s fifty day moving average is $34.96 and its two-hundred day moving average is $38.18.

NRG Energy (NYSE:NRG) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 7th. The utilities provider reported $0.70 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.78 by ($0.08). NRG Energy had a negative return on equity of 45.11% and a net margin of 6.20%. The business had revenue of $2.47 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.52 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.31 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up .2% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts forecast that NRG Energy will post 4.04 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, August 15th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, August 1st were paid a dividend of $0.12 per share. This represents a $0.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.37%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, July 31st. This is a positive change from NRG Energy’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.03. NRG Energy’s dividend payout ratio is currently 4.98%.

Several institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in shares of NRG Energy by 0.6% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 19,825,981 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $842,207,000 after buying an additional 120,542 shares during the last quarter. Steadfast Capital Management LP increased its holdings in shares of NRG Energy by 12.9% during the 2nd quarter. Steadfast Capital Management LP now owns 5,786,082 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $203,207,000 after buying an additional 660,020 shares during the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its holdings in shares of NRG Energy by 17.8% during the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 4,821,667 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $190,674,000 after buying an additional 727,114 shares during the last quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. increased its holdings in shares of NRG Energy by 14.4% during the 2nd quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 3,325,444 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $116,789,000 after buying an additional 417,939 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Northern Trust Corp increased its holdings in shares of NRG Energy by 1.3% during the 1st quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 3,280,184 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $139,342,000 after buying an additional 41,692 shares during the last quarter. 97.29% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

NRG Energy Company Profile

NRG Energy, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an energy company in the United States. The company is involved in the producing, selling, and delivering electricity and related products and services to 3.1 million residential, industrial, and commercial consumers. It generates electricity using natural gas, coal, oil, solar, nuclear, wind, fossil fuel, and nuclear sources.

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