Ameren Co. (NYSE:AEE) Given Average Recommendation of “Hold” by Analysts

Shares of Ameren Co. (NYSE:AEEGet Rating) have earned a consensus rating of “Hold” from the eight brokerages that are currently covering the stock, MarketBeat Ratings reports. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. The average 1 year price target among brokers that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $91.00.

A number of research analysts have issued reports on the company. StockNews.com assumed coverage on Ameren in a research note on Thursday, March 31st. They set a “hold” rating for the company. Morgan Stanley lifted their price objective on Ameren from $87.00 to $92.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, March 22nd. Wells Fargo & Company boosted their price target on Ameren from $95.00 to $100.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Friday, March 25th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets boosted their price target on Ameren from $85.00 to $95.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Wednesday, December 15th.

AEE traded down $0.32 on Wednesday, hitting $96.48. 1,097,100 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,329,140. The firm has a fifty day simple moving average of $88.51 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $86.53. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.28, a quick ratio of 0.49 and a current ratio of 0.70. Ameren has a 12 month low of $79.35 and a 12 month high of $97.61. The stock has a market capitalization of $24.87 billion, a PE ratio of 25.28, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.33 and a beta of 0.36.

Ameren (NYSE:AEEGet Rating) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 17th. The utilities provider reported $0.48 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.50 by ($0.02). Ameren had a net margin of 15.48% and a return on equity of 10.31%. The firm had revenue of $1.55 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.39 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.46 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts expect that Ameren will post 4.05 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, March 31st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, March 9th were issued a $0.59 dividend. This represents a $2.36 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.45%. This is an increase from Ameren’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.55. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, March 8th. Ameren’s dividend payout ratio is presently 61.46%.

In other Ameren news, SVP Mark C. Lindgren sold 999 shares of Ameren stock in a transaction dated Thursday, March 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $94.44, for a total transaction of $94,345.56. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, SVP Chonda J. Nwamu sold 1,677 shares of Ameren stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, March 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $87.41, for a total value of $146,586.57. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 75,299 shares of company stock worth $6,557,116. Company insiders own 0.56% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Morgan Stanley raised its holdings in shares of Ameren by 40.2% in the 2nd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 1,599,123 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $127,993,000 after buying an additional 458,665 shares during the period. Bank of America Corp DE increased its holdings in Ameren by 9.3% during the 2nd quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 2,007,860 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $160,708,000 after purchasing an additional 170,378 shares during the period. Private Advisor Group LLC increased its holdings in Ameren by 62.9% during the 3rd quarter. Private Advisor Group LLC now owns 14,629 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,185,000 after purchasing an additional 5,650 shares during the period. Avantax Advisory Services Inc. boosted its position in shares of Ameren by 10.9% during the 3rd quarter. Avantax Advisory Services Inc. now owns 3,060 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $247,000 after acquiring an additional 300 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. boosted its position in shares of Ameren by 36.6% during the 3rd quarter. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. now owns 24,066 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,949,000 after acquiring an additional 6,449 shares in the last quarter. 75.47% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Ameren Company Profile (Get Rating)

Ameren Corp. is a public utility holding company, which engages in the provision of electric and natural gas services. It operates through the following segments: Ameren Missouri, Ameren Illinois Electric Distribution, Ameren Illinois Natural Gas, Ameren Transmission, and Other. The Ameren Transmission segment consists of the aggregated electric transmission businesses of Ameren Illinois and Ameren Transmission Company of Illinois (ATXI).

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