Investors Sell Duke Energy (DUK) on Strength After Analyst Downgrade

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Traders sold shares of Duke Energy Corp (NYSE:DUK) on strength during trading on Thursday after Morgan Stanley lowered their price target on the stock from $84.00 to $79.00. $45.51 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $120.74 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $75.23 million out of the stock. Of all equities tracked, Duke Energy had the 16th highest net out-flow for the day. Duke Energy traded up $1.21 for the day and closed at $73.46

Other analysts have also recently issued research reports about the stock. Bank of America boosted their price objective on shares of Duke Energy from $79.00 to $81.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 18th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted their price objective on shares of Duke Energy from $77.00 to $78.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 10th. SunTrust Banks reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $82.00 price objective on shares of Duke Energy in a research note on Monday, April 23rd. Goldman Sachs Group cut shares of Duke Energy from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating and boosted their price objective for the stock from $76.90 to $78.00 in a research note on Wednesday, March 28th. Finally, Deutsche Bank raised shares of Duke Energy from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price objective for the stock from $77.22 to $86.00 in a research note on Monday, February 26th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $82.57.

In other Duke Energy news, Director E Marie Mckee sold 2,006 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, May 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $77.49, for a total transaction of $155,444.94. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, COO Dhiaa M. Jamil sold 3,800 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $76.98, for a total transaction of $292,524.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.08% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Zimmer Partners LP boosted its position in shares of Duke Energy by 939.3% during the 1st quarter. Zimmer Partners LP now owns 7,110,600 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $550,858,000 after purchasing an additional 6,426,400 shares in the last quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. boosted its position in shares of Duke Energy by 38.9% during the 1st quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 14,032,561 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,087,086,000 after purchasing an additional 3,933,094 shares in the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA boosted its position in shares of Duke Energy by 23.7% during the 1st quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 19,423,147 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,504,711,000 after purchasing an additional 3,718,916 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its position in shares of Duke Energy by 69.3% during the 4th quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 4,302,017 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $361,843,000 after purchasing an additional 1,760,350 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Two Sigma Advisers LP boosted its position in shares of Duke Energy by 735.4% during the 4th quarter. Two Sigma Advisers LP now owns 1,660,141 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $139,634,000 after purchasing an additional 1,461,422 shares in the last quarter. 59.08% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

The stock has a market capitalization of $50.56 billion, a PE ratio of 16.07, a PEG ratio of 3.29 and a beta of 0.12. The company has a current ratio of 0.64, a quick ratio of 0.39 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.17.

Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, May 10th. The utilities provider reported $1.28 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.14 by $0.14. The company had revenue of $5.32 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.76 billion. Duke Energy had a net margin of 12.33% and a return on equity of 8.10%. The business’s revenue was up 7.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.04 EPS. equities analysts anticipate that Duke Energy Corp will post 4.71 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 18th. Stockholders of record on Friday, May 18th will be given a dividend of $0.89 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, May 17th. This represents a $3.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.85%. Duke Energy’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 77.90%.

Duke Energy Company Profile

Duke Energy Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an energy company in the United States. It operates through three segments: Electric Utilities and Infrastructure, Gas Utilities and Infrastructure, and Commercial Renewables. The Electric Utilities and Infrastructure segment generates, transmits, distributes, and sells electricity in the Carolinas, Florida, and the Midwest; uses coal, hydroelectric, natural gas, oil, renewable sources, and nuclear fuel to generate electricity; and engages in the wholesale of electricity to municipalities, electric cooperative utilities, and other load-serving entities.

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