Zacks: Brokerages Anticipate FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE:FE) to Post $0.48 EPS

Wall Street brokerages forecast that FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE:FE) will announce earnings of $0.48 per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Two analysts have provided estimates for FirstEnergy’s earnings, with the highest EPS estimate coming in at $0.49 and the lowest estimate coming in at $0.46. FirstEnergy reported earnings per share of $0.50 during the same quarter last year, which suggests a negative year-over-year growth rate of 4%. The company is expected to report its next earnings results on Tuesday, February 18th.

On average, analysts expect that FirstEnergy will report full-year earnings of $2.51 per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from $2.49 to $2.52. For the next year, analysts expect that the firm will post earnings of $2.48 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $2.46 to $2.50. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share calculations are a mean average based on a survey of research firms that that provide coverage for FirstEnergy.

FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Monday, November 4th. The utilities provider reported $0.76 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.73 by $0.03. FirstEnergy had a net margin of 10.49% and a return on equity of 19.21%. The business had revenue of $3 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.91 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.80 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 3.4% on a year-over-year basis.

FE has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Mizuho raised shares of FirstEnergy from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price objective for the company from $47.00 to $53.00 in a report on Monday, November 25th. Bank of America lowered shares of FirstEnergy from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday, October 24th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Morgan Stanley lowered shares of FirstEnergy from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and cut their price objective for the company from $50.00 to $49.00 in a report on Tuesday, November 5th. ValuEngine lowered shares of FirstEnergy from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 2nd. Finally, Citigroup set a $49.00 price objective on shares of FirstEnergy and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, October 10th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $49.63.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of FE. Nuveen Asset Management LLC grew its holdings in shares of FirstEnergy by 2,004.3% in the second quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 14,658,518 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $627,531,000 after purchasing an additional 13,961,923 shares in the last quarter. Magellan Asset Management Ltd grew its holdings in shares of FirstEnergy by 880.7% in the second quarter. Magellan Asset Management Ltd now owns 4,139,429 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $177,209,000 after purchasing an additional 3,717,332 shares in the last quarter. Boston Partners grew its holdings in shares of FirstEnergy by 9,910.1% in the third quarter. Boston Partners now owns 2,825,957 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $136,297,000 after purchasing an additional 2,797,726 shares in the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA grew its holdings in shares of FirstEnergy by 7.6% in the third quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 30,083,866 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,450,945,000 after purchasing an additional 2,120,802 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Millennium Management LLC grew its holdings in shares of FirstEnergy by 235.3% in the third quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 2,117,379 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $102,121,000 after purchasing an additional 1,485,911 shares in the last quarter. 88.31% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

FE traded up $0.45 during trading on Wednesday, reaching $48.19. 3,096,275 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 4,274,080. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.67, a quick ratio of 0.56 and a current ratio of 0.62. FirstEnergy has a 12-month low of $35.33 and a 12-month high of $49.07. The firm has a fifty day simple moving average of $47.53 and a 200 day simple moving average of $45.41. The company has a market cap of $25.77 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.61, a PEG ratio of 3.17 and a beta of 0.18.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Sunday, December 1st. Investors of record on Thursday, November 7th were issued a $0.38 dividend. This represents a $1.52 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.15%. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, November 6th. FirstEnergy’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 58.69%.

About FirstEnergy

FirstEnergy Corp., through its subsidiaries, generates, transmits, and distributes electricity in the United States. The company operates through Regulated Distribution and Regulated Transmission segments. It owns and operates coal-fired, nuclear, hydroelectric, natural gas, wind, and solar power generating facilities.

Featured Story: Fundamental Analysis

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on FirstEnergy (FE)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Receive News & Ratings for FirstEnergy Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for FirstEnergy and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.