Hess (HES) Downgraded by Piper Jaffray Companies to Neutral

Hess (NYSE:HES) was downgraded by investment analysts at Piper Jaffray Companies from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note issued on Thursday, The Fly reports.

Other equities research analysts have also issued reports about the company. Mizuho began coverage on Hess in a research report on Monday, July 23rd. They set a “neutral” rating and a $80.00 price target on the stock. Morgan Stanley reissued a “buy” rating and set a $87.00 price target (up from $84.00) on shares of Hess in a research report on Tuesday, September 18th. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $60.00 target price on shares of Hess in a research report on Thursday, July 12th. Credit Suisse Group set a $61.00 target price on Hess and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, September 17th. Finally, KLR Group reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $74.00 target price on shares of Hess in a research report on Monday, August 20th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. Hess presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $64.62.

Shares of HES stock traded up $1.14 on Thursday, hitting $71.58. 3,172,907 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 3,799,819. The company has a current ratio of 2.41, a quick ratio of 2.29 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.56. The firm has a market cap of $21.47 billion, a P/E ratio of -15.53 and a beta of 1.42. Hess has a 1-year low of $40.26 and a 1-year high of $73.25.

Hess (NYSE:HES) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 25th. The oil and gas producer reported ($0.23) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.32) by $0.09. The business had revenue of $1.57 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.35 billion. Hess had a negative return on equity of 6.04% and a negative net margin of 59.77%. The business’s revenue was up 30.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted ($1.46) EPS. research analysts forecast that Hess will post -0.72 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, COO Gregory P. Hill sold 11,480 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $65.69, for a total transaction of $754,121.20. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 76,511 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,026,007.59. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Michael R. Turner sold 10,243 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, June 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $67.96, for a total value of $696,114.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 12.09% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Northern Trust Corp increased its holdings in shares of Hess by 0.3% during the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 3,047,025 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $203,815,000 after purchasing an additional 7,856 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its holdings in shares of Hess by 0.4% during the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 2,427,477 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $162,356,000 after purchasing an additional 9,173 shares during the period. Investec Asset Management LTD increased its holdings in shares of Hess by 4.5% during the second quarter. Investec Asset Management LTD now owns 2,005,513 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $134,149,000 after purchasing an additional 87,208 shares during the period. Elephas Investment Management Ltd increased its holdings in shares of Hess by 34.3% during the first quarter. Elephas Investment Management Ltd now owns 1,544,300 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $78,172,000 after purchasing an additional 394,700 shares during the period. Finally, Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its holdings in shares of Hess by 2.0% during the first quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 1,376,132 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $69,625,000 after purchasing an additional 26,630 shares during the period. 88.74% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Hess Company Profile

Hess Corporation, an exploration and production company, develops, produces, purchases, transports, and sells crude oil, natural gas liquids (NGLs), and natural gas. It operates through two segments, Exploration and Production, and Midstream. The company conducts production operations primarily in the United States, Denmark, the Malaysia/Thailand Joint Development Area, and Malaysia; and exploration activities primarily offshore Guyana, Suriname, Canada, and in the Gulf of Mexico.

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