Zacks Investment Research Upgrades WEC Energy Group (WEC) to Hold

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WEC Energy Group (NYSE:WEC) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Saturday.

According to Zacks, “In the last 12 months, WEC Energy’s shares have outperformed the industry. Courtesy the improving economic condition, the company continues to witness an increase in customer volume. Its long-term investments in infrastructure projects will help to meet higher demand and improve service reliability. Strategic acquisitions are going to be accretive to WEC Energy’s performance. The company will benefit from the completion of the Modernization plan in 2021. Major chunk of WEC Energy’s electricity production is generated from coal fired units and some coal units could attract emission regulation, making it uneconomical to maintain and operate. The Company’s dependence on financial performance of its subsidiaries to meet its obligation is a concern.”

Several other research analysts have also weighed in on WEC. Argus increased their target price on shares of WEC Energy Group from $75.00 to $81.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, December 6th. ValuEngine raised shares of WEC Energy Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, November 12th. Barclays increased their target price on shares of WEC Energy Group from $71.00 to $73.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, November 19th. Bank of America lowered shares of WEC Energy Group from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, November 1st. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Credit Suisse Group increased their target price on shares of WEC Energy Group from $69.00 to $70.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, November 1st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $72.00.

WEC Energy Group stock traded up $0.73 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $74.72. 1,331,792 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,586,594. WEC Energy Group has a fifty-two week low of $58.48 and a fifty-two week high of $75.48. The stock has a market cap of $23.35 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.80, a PEG ratio of 4.84 and a beta of 0.15. The company has a current ratio of 0.51, a quick ratio of 0.34 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.93.

In other news, Chairman Gale E. Klappa sold 146,618 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $71.68, for a total value of $10,509,578.24. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, insider Joseph Kevin Fletcher sold 72,455 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.65, for a total transaction of $5,118,945.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 319,073 shares of company stock valued at $22,864,524. Insiders own 0.94% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of WEC. We Are One Seven LLC purchased a new position in shares of WEC Energy Group in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $30,000. Essex Investment Management Co. LLC purchased a new position in shares of WEC Energy Group in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $30,000. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund lifted its stake in WEC Energy Group by 6,740.9% in the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 2,359,757 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $34,000 after acquiring an additional 2,325,262 shares during the last quarter. Gantzert Investment Co. LLC ADV purchased a new position in WEC Energy Group in the fourth quarter worth approximately $35,000. Finally, Mondrian Investment Partners LTD purchased a new position in WEC Energy Group in the fourth quarter worth approximately $41,000. 73.18% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About WEC Energy Group

WEC Energy Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides regulated natural gas and electricity, and nonregulated renewable energy services in the United States. The company operates through six segments: Wisconsin, Illinois, Other States, Electric Transmission, Non-Utility Energy Infrastructure, and Corporate and Other.

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