PPL (NYSE:PPL) Hits New 1-Year Low Following Analyst Downgrade

Shares of PPL Co. (NYSE:PPLGet Rating) hit a new 52-week low during trading on Friday after Credit Suisse Group lowered their price target on the stock from $33.00 to $29.00. Credit Suisse Group currently has an outperform rating on the stock. PPL traded as low as $25.04 and last traded at $25.06, with a volume of 81299 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $25.74.

PPL has been the topic of a number of other research reports. Wolfe Research upgraded shares of PPL from a “peer perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $28.00 to $30.00 in a research note on Wednesday, March 9th. StockNews.com lowered PPL from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 8th. Morgan Stanley reduced their price target on shares of PPL from $32.00 to $31.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, May 23rd. Royal Bank of Canada raised shares of PPL from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and reduced their price target for the company from $32.00 to $31.00 in a research report on Tuesday, February 22nd. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company upped their price target on PPL from $33.00 to $34.00 in a research note on Tuesday, June 7th. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $32.56.

In other news, insider Stephanie R. Raymond sold 3,374 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, June 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $30.45, for a total transaction of $102,738.30. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 23,182 shares in the company, valued at $705,891.90. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Company insiders own 0.17% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in PPL. Mirae Asset Global Investments Co. Ltd. boosted its position in PPL by 24.3% during the first quarter. Mirae Asset Global Investments Co. Ltd. now owns 81,280 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $2,321,000 after purchasing an additional 15,868 shares in the last quarter. Fortitude Advisory Group L.L.C. boosted its holdings in PPL by 31.1% in the first quarter. Fortitude Advisory Group L.L.C. now owns 5,522 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $158,000 after acquiring an additional 1,310 shares in the last quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC boosted its holdings in PPL by 7.0% in the first quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 50,869 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,453,000 after acquiring an additional 3,322 shares in the last quarter. Sawtooth Solutions LLC acquired a new stake in PPL in the first quarter worth about $436,000. Finally, Van Hulzen Asset Management LLC boosted its holdings in PPL by 26.2% in the first quarter. Van Hulzen Asset Management LLC now owns 9,644 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $275,000 after acquiring an additional 2,000 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 65.63% of the company’s stock.

The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.77, a current ratio of 1.88 and a quick ratio of 1.79. The firm has a market cap of $18.54 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 30.28 and a beta of 0.73. The firm has a fifty day simple moving average of $29.09 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $28.69.

PPL (NYSE:PPLGet Rating) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 5th. The utilities provider reported $0.41 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.01. PPL had a return on equity of 6.25% and a net margin of 10.43%. The business had revenue of $1.78 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.65 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.28 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 19.0% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts anticipate that PPL Co. will post 1.38 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, July 1st. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, June 21st will be paid a $0.225 dividend. This represents a $0.90 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.57%. This is a boost from PPL’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.20. The ex-dividend date is Friday, June 17th. PPL’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 94.12%.

About PPL (NYSE:PPL)

PPL Corporation, a utility holding company, delivers electricity and natural gas in the United States and the United Kingdom. The company operates through two segments: Kentucky Regulated and Pennsylvania Regulated. It serves approximately 429,000 electric and 333,000 natural gas customers in Louisville and adjacent areas in Kentucky; 538,000 electric customers in central, southeastern, and western Kentucky; and 28,000 electric customers in five counties in southwestern Virginia.

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