Ameren (NYSE:AEE) Lifted to “Buy” at Bank of America

Bank of America upgraded shares of Ameren (NYSE:AEE) from a neutral rating to a buy rating in a report issued on Tuesday, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. The analysts noted that the move was a valuation call.

Several other equities analysts also recently commented on AEE. SunTrust Banks set a $82.00 price target on shares of Ameren and gave the company a hold rating in a report on Tuesday, September 3rd. Argus upgraded shares of Ameren from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Thursday, July 25th. Morgan Stanley upped their price target on shares of Ameren from $78.00 to $80.00 and gave the company an equal weight rating in a report on Friday, September 6th. Wolfe Research upgraded shares of Ameren from a market perform rating to an outperform rating and set a $80.00 price target on the stock in a report on Thursday, September 12th. Finally, KeyCorp assumed coverage on shares of Ameren in a report on Tuesday, June 4th. They set a sector weight rating on the stock. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $76.17.

Shares of NYSE:AEE opened at $78.66 on Tuesday. The company has a market capitalization of $19.06 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.64, a PEG ratio of 3.73 and a beta of 0.23. Ameren has a 12 month low of $62.06 and a 12 month high of $78.88. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $76.43 and its 200 day moving average is $74.66. The company has a current ratio of 0.55, a quick ratio of 0.39 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.04.

Ameren (NYSE:AEE) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, August 2nd. The utilities provider reported $0.72 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.75 by ($0.03). The firm had revenue of $1.38 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.43 billion. Ameren had a net margin of 13.08% and a return on equity of 10.31%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.97 earnings per share. As a group, equities analysts forecast that Ameren will post 3.24 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, September 30th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, September 11th will be paid a $0.475 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, September 10th. This represents a $1.90 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.42%. Ameren’s dividend payout ratio is currently 56.38%.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its stake in Ameren by 2.1% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 30,022,835 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $2,255,015,000 after acquiring an additional 624,618 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. grew its stake in Ameren by 1.1% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 17,025,407 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,278,779,000 after acquiring an additional 188,320 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC grew its stake in Ameren by 13.7% in the 1st quarter. FMR LLC now owns 4,290,891 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $315,597,000 after acquiring an additional 518,279 shares in the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp grew its stake in Ameren by 3.8% in the 1st quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 3,518,096 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $258,755,000 after acquiring an additional 128,079 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC grew its stake in Ameren by 9.0% in the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 3,389,046 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $220,707,000 after acquiring an additional 279,511 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 70.90% of the company’s stock.

Ameren Company Profile

Ameren Corporation operates as a public utility holding company in the United States. It operates through four segments: Ameren Missouri, Ameren Illinois Electric Distribution, Ameren Illinois Natural Gas, and Ameren Transmission. The company engages in the rate-regulated electric generation, transmission, and distribution activities; and rate-regulated natural gas distribution and transmission businesses.

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Analyst Recommendations for Ameren (NYSE:AEE)

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