Noble Energy Inc. (NBL) Upgraded to Buy by Bank of America Corporation

Noble Energy Inc. (NYSE:NBL) was upgraded by Bank of America Corporation from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday, May 11th, Marketbeat.com reports. The firm currently has a $49.00 price target on the oil and gas development company’s stock, down from their previous price target of $53.00. Bank of America Corporation’s price target would suggest a potential upside of 66.10% from the company’s current price.

Several other research firms also recently commented on NBL. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $46.00 price target on shares of Noble Energy in a research report on Tuesday, January 17th. Barclays PLC dropped their price objective on shares of Noble Energy from $46.00 to $44.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a research note on Monday, January 23rd. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $46.00 price objective on shares of Noble Energy in a research note on Wednesday, February 15th. Evercore ISI reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $40.00 price target on shares of Noble Energy in a research note on Tuesday, May 2nd. Finally, KLR Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Noble Energy in a research note on Monday, March 13th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating, nineteen have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $44.53.

Analyst Recommendations for Noble Energy (NYSE:NBL)

Shares of Noble Energy (NYSE:NBL) traded down 0.74% during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $29.50. 15,470,799 shares of the company traded hands. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $30.38 and a 200-day moving average price of $35.40. The stock’s market capitalization is $12.71 billion. Noble Energy has a 52 week low of $27.92 and a 52 week high of $42.03.

Noble Energy (NYSE:NBL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Monday, May 1st. The oil and gas development company reported ($0.05) EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of ($0.14) by $0.09. Noble Energy had a negative net margin of 17.75% and a negative return on equity of 0.44%. The firm had revenue of $1.04 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $974.54 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned ($0.53) EPS. Noble Energy’s revenue for the quarter was up 43.1% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts anticipate that Noble Energy will post ($0.01) earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, May 22nd. Shareholders of record on Monday, May 8th were given a $0.10 dividend. This represents a $0.40 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.36%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, May 4th. Noble Energy’s dividend payout ratio is currently -25.48%.

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Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can boosted its stake in Noble Energy by 0.9% in the third quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 320,915 shares of the oil and gas development company’s stock worth $11,458,000 after buying an additional 2,928 shares in the last quarter. Shell Asset Management Co. boosted its stake in Noble Energy by 1.9% in the third quarter. Shell Asset Management Co. now owns 34,730 shares of the oil and gas development company’s stock worth $1,241,000 after buying an additional 648 shares in the last quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management Co. Ltd. boosted its stake in Noble Energy by 3.5% in the third quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management Co. Ltd. now owns 66,427 shares of the oil and gas development company’s stock worth $2,374,000 after buying an additional 2,263 shares in the last quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. boosted its stake in Noble Energy by 43.5% in the third quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. now owns 1,761,859 shares of the oil and gas development company’s stock worth $62,969,000 after buying an additional 533,706 shares in the last quarter. Finally, World Asset Management Inc raised its stake in shares of Noble Energy by 2.3% in the third quarter. World Asset Management Inc now owns 43,716 shares of the oil and gas development company’s stock valued at $1,562,000 after buying an additional 985 shares in the last quarter. 97.42% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About Noble Energy

Noble Energy, Inc is an independent energy company. The Company is engaged in crude oil, natural gas and natural gas and natural gas liquids (NGLs) exploration, development, production and acquisition. The Company’s segments include: United States, including the onshore DJ Basin, Permian Basin, Eagle Ford Shale, Marcellus Shale and offshore deepwater Gulf of Mexico, as well as the consolidated accounts of Noble Midstream Partners LP (Noble Midstream Partners); Eastern Mediterranean, including offshore Israel and Cyprus; West Africa, including offshore Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon and Gabon, and Other International and Corporate, including new ventures, such as offshore the Falkland Islands, Suriname and Newfoundland.

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