Investors Buy Large Volume of Put Options on FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE)

FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE:FEGet Free Report) was the recipient of some unusual options trading activity on Thursday. Traders acquired 7,057 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 307% compared to the average daily volume of 1,734 put options.

FirstEnergy Stock Performance

Shares of FirstEnergy stock traded up $0.42 during trading hours on Thursday, hitting $35.51. 948,631 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 3,627,668. FirstEnergy has a 12-month low of $34.69 and a 12-month high of $43.31. The stock has a market capitalization of $20.36 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 44.43, a PEG ratio of 2.15 and a beta of 0.45. The company has a fifty day simple moving average of $37.72 and a 200-day simple moving average of $38.75. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.07, a current ratio of 0.60 and a quick ratio of 0.49.

FirstEnergy (NYSE:FEGet Free Report) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.47 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.46 by $0.01. FirstEnergy had a net margin of 3.55% and a return on equity of 12.41%. The company had revenue of $3.01 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.89 billion. Equities research analysts anticipate that FirstEnergy will post 2.53 EPS for the current fiscal year.

FirstEnergy Dividend Announcement

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 7th were given a dividend of $0.39 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, August 4th. This represents a $1.56 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.39%. FirstEnergy’s payout ratio is currently 197.47%.

Institutional Investors Weigh In On FirstEnergy

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. GW&K Investment Management LLC lifted its position in FirstEnergy by 159.2% during the 4th quarter. GW&K Investment Management LLC now owns 635 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $27,000 after acquiring an additional 390 shares during the period. Clear Street Markets LLC grew its stake in shares of FirstEnergy by 549.0% in the fourth quarter. Clear Street Markets LLC now owns 649 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $27,000 after acquiring an additional 549 shares during the period. Certified Advisory Corp bought a new stake in shares of FirstEnergy in the first quarter worth approximately $29,000. Householder Group Estate & Retirement Specialist LLC bought a new stake in FirstEnergy during the first quarter valued at approximately $30,000. Finally, Cornerstone Planning Group LLC bought a new stake in FirstEnergy during the second quarter valued at approximately $31,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 82.34% of the company’s stock.

Wall Street Analyst Weigh In

Several equities research analysts have recently commented on FE shares. TheStreet cut shares of FirstEnergy from a “b” rating to a “c+” rating in a research report on Friday, August 4th. UBS Group lowered shares of FirstEnergy from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and reduced their price objective for the stock from $45.00 to $40.00 in a research note on Monday, August 7th. Barclays initiated coverage on shares of FirstEnergy in a research note on Wednesday, August 23rd. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $37.00 price objective on the stock. Guggenheim reduced their price objective on shares of FirstEnergy from $46.00 to $44.00 in a research note on Friday, July 7th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reduced their price objective on shares of FirstEnergy from $44.00 to $41.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company. According to data from MarketBeat, the company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $41.40.

View Our Latest Analysis on FE

FirstEnergy Company Profile

(Get Free Report)

FirstEnergy Corp., through its subsidiaries, generates, transmits, and distributes electricity in the United States. It operates through Regulated Distribution and Regulated Transmission segments. The company owns and operates coal-fired, nuclear, hydroelectric, wind, and solar power generating facilities.

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