ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) Raised to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) from a strong sell rating to a hold rating in a research note released on Thursday morning, Zacks.com reports. They currently have $52.00 target price on the energy producer’s stock.

According to Zacks, “ConocoPhillips’ expectation for higher production costs and operating expenses are likely to hurt profits. For 2019, the firm projects total production and operating expenses of $5.4 billion, higher than $5.2 billion for 2018. Also, for second-quarter 2019, the company projects production in the range of 1,240-1,280 MBoE/D, suggesting a reduction in sequential volumes. Moreover, the company’s first-quarter 2019 free cash flow plunged 51% sequentially to $1.4 billion due to low cash generation from operations. Additionally, with majority of ConocoPhillips’ production comprising oil, the drop in commodity prices due to escalating trade tensions between the United States and China and increasing crude inventories are hurting the firm’s bottom line. As such, the stock is expected to underperform the market. “

Other equities research analysts have also issued reports about the company. Morgan Stanley set a $100.00 price objective on Cimarex Energy and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, May 16th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. initiated coverage on Pinduoduo in a research note on Tuesday, July 9th. They issued an underweight rating and a $20.48 price objective on the stock. ValuEngine upgraded Zogenix from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note on Thursday, June 27th. Credit Suisse Group reiterated an outperform rating and issued a GBX 2,012 ($26.29) price objective on shares of Aston Martin Lagonda Global in a research note on Wednesday, May 1st. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies set a $30.00 price objective on KLX Energy Services and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, March 21st. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. ConocoPhillips presently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $77.07.

COP stock opened at $61.76 on Thursday. ConocoPhillips has a 1-year low of $56.75 and a 1-year high of $80.24. The company has a market cap of $69.80 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.48, a P/E/G ratio of 1.63 and a beta of 1.00. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $59.91. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.45, a quick ratio of 1.72 and a current ratio of 1.86.

ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, April 30th. The energy producer reported $1.00 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.92 by $0.08. ConocoPhillips had a return on equity of 16.65% and a net margin of 18.08%. The company had revenue of $10.06 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $9.16 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.96 EPS. On average, research analysts expect that ConocoPhillips will post 3.99 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 3rd. Stockholders of record on Monday, July 22nd will be issued a $0.305 dividend. This represents a $1.22 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.98%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, July 19th. ConocoPhillips’s payout ratio is currently 26.93%.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. First Commonwealth Financial Corp PA lifted its holdings in ConocoPhillips by 2.8% during the 4th quarter. First Commonwealth Financial Corp PA now owns 5,454 shares of the energy producer’s stock worth $340,000 after buying an additional 150 shares in the last quarter. Fishman Jay A Ltd. MI lifted its holdings in ConocoPhillips by 0.4% during the 4th quarter. Fishman Jay A Ltd. MI now owns 38,267 shares of the energy producer’s stock worth $2,386,000 after buying an additional 152 shares in the last quarter. Arete Wealth Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in ConocoPhillips by 1.5% during the 4th quarter. Arete Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 10,832 shares of the energy producer’s stock worth $675,000 after buying an additional 158 shares in the last quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. lifted its holdings in ConocoPhillips by 0.5% during the 1st quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. now owns 34,226 shares of the energy producer’s stock worth $2,284,000 after buying an additional 160 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Kanawha Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in ConocoPhillips by 0.9% during the 1st quarter. Kanawha Capital Management LLC now owns 18,026 shares of the energy producer’s stock worth $1,203,000 after buying an additional 165 shares in the last quarter. 72.09% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About ConocoPhillips

ConocoPhillips explores for, produces, transports, and markets crude oil, bitumen, natural gas, liquefied natural gas (LNG), and natural gas liquids worldwide. The company primarily engages in the tight oil reservoirs, LNG, oil sands, and other production operations. Its portfolio includes unconventional plays in North America; conventional assets in North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia; various LNG developments; oil sands assets in Canada; and an inventory of conventional and unconventional exploration prospects.

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