ALLETE (NYSE:ALE) Cut to “Sell” at Zacks Investment Research

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ALLETE (NYSE:ALE) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued on Friday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “ALLETE is an energy company. In addition to its electric utilities, Minnesota Power and Superior Water, Light and Power of Wisconsin, ALLETE owns ALLETE Clean Energy, based in Duluth, U.S. Water Services headquartered in St. Michael, Minn., BNI Energy in Center, N.D., and has an eight percent equity interest in the American Transmission Co. “

NYSE ALE traded up $0.38 during trading on Friday, reaching $87.52. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 12,597 shares, compared to its average volume of 177,908. The company has a current ratio of 1.34, a quick ratio of 1.08 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.68. The firm has a market capitalization of $4.50 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.18, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.31 and a beta of 0.22. ALLETE has a 12 month low of $72.42 and a 12 month high of $88.58. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $85.64 and a 200 day moving average price of $83.77.

ALLETE (NYSE:ALE) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.66 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.66. The firm had revenue of $290.40 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $349.00 million. ALLETE had a net margin of 13.61% and a return on equity of 9.14%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 15.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.61 EPS. On average, equities analysts forecast that ALLETE will post 3.65 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, CEO Alan R. Hodnik sold 6,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.09, for a total transaction of $510,540.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 67,377 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,733,108.93. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Corporate insiders own 0.43% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Arizona State Retirement System lifted its stake in ALLETE by 1.3% in the 2nd quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 37,467 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $3,118,000 after purchasing an additional 473 shares during the last quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund lifted its stake in ALLETE by 1.9% in the 1st quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 20,526 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,688,000 after purchasing an additional 390 shares during the last quarter. First Trust Advisors LP lifted its stake in ALLETE by 11.9% in the 2nd quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 423,870 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $35,270,000 after purchasing an additional 45,205 shares during the last quarter. CWM LLC lifted its stake in ALLETE by 40.0% in the 2nd quarter. CWM LLC now owns 574 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $48,000 after purchasing an additional 164 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Advisor Group Inc. lifted its stake in ALLETE by 20.2% in the 2nd quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 3,405 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $284,000 after purchasing an additional 573 shares during the last quarter. 71.80% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About ALLETE

ALLETE, Inc operates as an energy company. The company operates through three segments: Regulated Operations, ALLETE Clean Energy, and U.S. Water Services. It generates electricity from coal-fired, wind, hydroelectric, natural gas-fired, biomass co-fired, solar, and other sources. The company provides regulated utility electric, natural gas, and water services in northwestern Wisconsin to approximately 15,000 electric customers, 13,000 natural gas customers, and 10,000 water customers, as well as regulated utility electric services in northeastern Minnesota to approximately 145,000 retail customers and 16 non-affiliated municipal customers.

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