BHP Billiton Limited (BHP) Given Average Recommendation of “Hold” by Analysts

Shares of BHP Billiton Limited (NYSE:BHP) have been given a consensus rating of “Hold” by the eighteen ratings firms that are covering the firm, MarketBeat reports. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, nine have given a hold recommendation, five have issued a buy recommendation and one has assigned a strong buy recommendation to the company. The average 1-year price target among brokers that have covered the stock in the last year is $43.54.

BHP has been the subject of a number of research reports. Investec raised shares of BHP Billiton from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, March 9th. ValuEngine raised shares of BHP Billiton from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, February 23rd. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of BHP Billiton from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $54.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, January 9th. Deutsche Bank lowered shares of BHP Billiton from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, February 20th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein lowered shares of BHP Billiton from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and lowered their price objective for the stock from $49.55 to $47.00 in a research note on Monday, January 22nd.

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Shares of NYSE BHP traded down $0.75 during mid-day trading on Monday, reaching $43.68. The company had a trading volume of 2,832,861 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,019,188. BHP Billiton has a 52 week low of $33.37 and a 52 week high of $50.79. The stock has a market cap of $71,332.37, a PE ratio of 17.26, a PEG ratio of 2.50 and a beta of 1.22. The company has a current ratio of 1.75, a quick ratio of 1.40 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.41.

The firm also recently disclosed a Semi-Annual dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, March 27th. Investors of record on Friday, March 9th were paid a $1.10 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, March 8th. This is a positive change from BHP Billiton’s previous Semi-Annual dividend of $0.86. This represents a yield of 4.73%. BHP Billiton’s dividend payout ratio is 86.96%.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in BHP. Segantii Capital Management Ltd purchased a new stake in shares of BHP Billiton during the fourth quarter valued at about $147,421,000. Luminus Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of BHP Billiton during the fourth quarter valued at about $29,990,000. Two Sigma Investments LP lifted its position in shares of BHP Billiton by 217.2% during the fourth quarter. Two Sigma Investments LP now owns 949,732 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $43,678,000 after buying an additional 650,331 shares during the last quarter. LMR Partners LLP purchased a new stake in shares of BHP Billiton during the fourth quarter valued at about $24,392,000. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. lifted its position in shares of BHP Billiton by 170.3% during the third quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 598,805 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $24,245,000 after buying an additional 377,242 shares during the last quarter. 3.21% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About BHP Billiton

BHP Billiton Limited is a global resources company. The Company is a producer of various commodities, including iron ore, metallurgical coal, copper and uranium. Its segments include Petroleum, Copper, Iron Ore and Coal. The Petroleum segment is engaged in the exploration, development and production of oil and gas.

Analyst Recommendations for BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP)

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