Enerplus (ERF) Upgraded at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Enerplus (NYSE:ERF) (TSE:ERF) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report issued on Tuesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Enerplus Corporation, formerly known as Enerplus Resources, is an independent oil and gas production company with resources across Western Canada and the United States. The Company’s resource plays include shallow gas/coal bed methane, tight gas, crude oil waterfloods, Bakken/Tight oil and oil sands located in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Enerplus Corporation is based in Alberta, Canada. “

Several other research firms have also commented on ERF. ValuEngine lowered Enerplus from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Wednesday, October 24th. SunTrust Banks set a $15.00 price objective on shares of Enerplus and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, November 27th. TheStreet lowered shares of Enerplus from a c rating to a d+ rating in a report on Thursday, August 16th. Finally, Raymond James restated a buy rating and issued a $25.50 price objective on shares of Enerplus in a report on Monday, December 3rd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has assigned a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Enerplus currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $17.63.

NYSE ERF opened at $9.16 on Tuesday. Enerplus has a 52 week low of $8.25 and a 52 week high of $13.87. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.34, a quick ratio of 1.20 and a current ratio of 1.20. The firm has a market cap of $2.20 billion, a PE ratio of 13.48 and a beta of 1.54.

Enerplus (NYSE:ERF) (TSE:ERF) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Friday, November 9th. The oil and natural gas company reported $0.27 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.28 by ($0.01). Enerplus had a return on equity of 12.80% and a net margin of 13.12%. The company had revenue of $244.50 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $264.36 million. Sell-side analysts expect that Enerplus will post 0.61 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a monthly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 14th. Investors of record on Thursday, November 29th will be issued a $0.0076 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 28th. This represents a $0.09 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.99%. Enerplus’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 11.25%.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Connor Clark & Lunn Investment Management Ltd. raised its holdings in Enerplus by 6.4% in the 3rd quarter. Connor Clark & Lunn Investment Management Ltd. now owns 14,542,599 shares of the oil and natural gas company’s stock valued at $179,448,000 after buying an additional 868,875 shares during the period. Boston Partners raised its holdings in Enerplus by 0.8% in the 2nd quarter. Boston Partners now owns 8,489,075 shares of the oil and natural gas company’s stock valued at $106,962,000 after buying an additional 67,216 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its holdings in Enerplus by 4.8% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 6,013,637 shares of the oil and natural gas company’s stock valued at $74,208,000 after buying an additional 276,520 shares during the period. Bank of America Corp DE raised its holdings in Enerplus by 63.3% in the 2nd quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 2,633,036 shares of the oil and natural gas company’s stock valued at $33,176,000 after buying an additional 1,020,246 shares during the period. Finally, Intact Investment Management Inc. raised its holdings in Enerplus by 4.7% in the 3rd quarter. Intact Investment Management Inc. now owns 2,479,950 shares of the oil and natural gas company’s stock valued at $39,456,000 after buying an additional 110,800 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 53.81% of the company’s stock.

About Enerplus

Enerplus Corporation, together with subsidiaries, engages in the exploration and development of crude oil and natural gas in the United States and Canada. Its crude oil properties are located in the Fort Berthold region of North Dakota and the Elm Coulee field in Richland County, Montana; and crude oil Waterfloods in Alberta and Saskatchewan, Canada.

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