Ameren (AEE) Downgraded by Morgan Stanley to Underweight

Morgan Stanley downgraded shares of Ameren (NYSE:AEE) from an equal weight rating to an underweight rating in a research report released on Wednesday morning. Morgan Stanley currently has $61.00 price objective on the utilities provider’s stock.

Several other analysts have also weighed in on the company. ValuEngine raised Ameren from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Wednesday, November 15th. Zacks Investment Research lowered Ameren from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Monday, September 11th. KeyCorp reissued a hold rating on shares of Ameren in a report on Friday, October 20th. Bank of America started coverage on Ameren in a report on Tuesday, October 24th. They issued a neutral rating and a $62.00 price objective for the company. Finally, BidaskClub raised Ameren from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a report on Saturday, August 26th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $56.80.

Shares of Ameren (AEE) traded down $0.11 during trading on Wednesday, reaching $61.25. The company had a trading volume of 2,028,700 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,408,353. Ameren has a 52-week low of $50.36 and a 52-week high of $64.89. The firm has a market capitalization of $14,820.00, a PE ratio of 23.78, a P/E/G ratio of 3.27 and a beta of 0.37. The company has a quick ratio of 0.40, a current ratio of 0.61 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.92.

Ameren (NYSE:AEE) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, November 3rd. The utilities provider reported $1.24 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.31 by ($0.07). Ameren had a net margin of 10.03% and a return on equity of 8.61%. The company had revenue of $1.72 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.87 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $1.52 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 7.3% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts predict that Ameren will post 2.81 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 29th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, December 13th will be paid a $0.4575 dividend. This is an increase from Ameren’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.44. This represents a $1.83 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.99%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, December 12th. Ameren’s payout ratio is presently 69.84%.

In other Ameren news, SVP Gregory L. Nelson sold 12,000 shares of Ameren stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.68, for a total value of $752,160.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 36,785 shares in the company, valued at $2,305,683.80. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Insiders own 0.38% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in Ameren by 1.0% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 25,785,464 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,409,691,000 after acquiring an additional 248,010 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in shares of Ameren by 2.2% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 16,134,996 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $882,101,000 after buying an additional 344,141 shares during the period. Epoch Investment Partners Inc. boosted its position in shares of Ameren by 1.3% during the second quarter. Epoch Investment Partners Inc. now owns 5,209,589 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $284,808,000 after buying an additional 67,494 shares during the period. Wells Fargo & Company MN boosted its position in shares of Ameren by 12.9% during the third quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 4,478,768 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $259,053,000 after buying an additional 511,854 shares during the period. Finally, APG Asset Management N.V. boosted its position in shares of Ameren by 463.6% during the third quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 3,462,798 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $200,288,000 after buying an additional 2,848,400 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 70.54% of the company’s stock.

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About Ameren

Ameren Corporation is a utility holding company. The Company’s subsidiaries include Ameren Missouri, Ameren Illinois and Ameren Transmission Company (ATXI). It operates through four segments. The Ameren Missouri segment includes all of the operations of Ameren Missouri. The Ameren Illinois Electric Distribution segment consists of the electric distribution business of Ameren Illinois.

Analyst Recommendations for Ameren (NYSE:AEE)

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