Morgan Stanley Boosts Duke Energy (DUK) Price Target to $91.00

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Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) had its price objective increased by Morgan Stanley from $86.00 to $91.00 in a report issued on Tuesday morning. They currently have a hold rating on the utilities provider’s stock.

A number of other equities research analysts have also commented on DUK. Zacks Investment Research lowered Duke Energy from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 20th. ValuEngine upgraded Duke Energy from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Monday, July 2nd. Howard Weil began coverage on Duke Energy in a research report on Tuesday, July 24th. They issued a sector outperform rating and a $85.00 target price on the stock. JPMorgan Chase & Co. dropped their target price on Duke Energy from $77.00 to $72.00 and set an underweight rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, June 7th. Finally, Guggenheim reiterated a buy rating and issued a $85.00 target price on shares of Duke Energy in a research report on Monday, July 23rd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Duke Energy presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $84.00.

Shares of NYSE DUK opened at $82.15 on Tuesday. The company has a market capitalization of $57.62 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.98, a PEG ratio of 3.69 and a beta of 0.04. Duke Energy has a 52 week low of $71.96 and a 52 week high of $91.80. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.17, a quick ratio of 0.41 and a current ratio of 0.66.

Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, August 2nd. The utilities provider reported $0.93 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.01 by ($0.08). The firm had revenue of $5.64 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.61 billion. Duke Energy had a net margin of 11.52% and a return on equity of 7.92%. Duke Energy’s quarterly revenue was up 1.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.01 EPS. sell-side analysts predict that Duke Energy will post 4.72 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, September 17th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 17th will be issued a $0.9275 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, August 16th. This is an increase from Duke Energy’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.89. This represents a $3.71 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.52%. Duke Energy’s payout ratio is presently 81.18%.

In other news, COO Dhiaa M. Jamil sold 4,279 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $81.54, for a total transaction of $348,909.66. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Melissa H. Anderson sold 500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $81.76, for a total value of $40,880.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 15,096 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,234,248.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 11,779 shares of company stock valued at $956,650 over the last three months. 0.07% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in DUK. Wells Fargo & Company MN raised its stake in shares of Duke Energy by 3.2% during the 1st quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 3,667,525 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $284,122,000 after buying an additional 114,386 shares during the period. Centaurus Financial Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Duke Energy during the 1st quarter worth approximately $177,000. Keeler Thomas Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Duke Energy by 11.3% during the 1st quarter. Keeler Thomas Management LLC now owns 13,607 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,054,000 after buying an additional 1,385 shares during the period. Focused Wealth Management Inc raised its stake in shares of Duke Energy by 526.5% during the 1st quarter. Focused Wealth Management Inc now owns 2,832 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $219,000 after buying an additional 2,380 shares during the period. Finally, Hyman Charles D raised its stake in Duke Energy by 1.1% in the 1st quarter. Hyman Charles D now owns 145,302 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $11,257,000 after purchasing an additional 1,560 shares during the last quarter. 58.71% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Duke Energy Company Profile

Duke Energy Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an energy company in the United States. It operates through three segments: Electric Utilities and Infrastructure, Gas Utilities and Infrastructure, and Commercial Renewables. The Electric Utilities and Infrastructure segment generates, transmits, distributes, and sells electricity in the Carolinas, Florida, and the Midwest; uses coal, hydroelectric, natural gas, oil, renewable sources, and nuclear fuel to generate electricity; and engages in the wholesale of electricity to municipalities, electric cooperative utilities, and other load-serving entities.

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