How Will Public Service Enterprise (PEG) Stock React To This Ratings Downgrade Today?

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. (PEG) was downgraded to "hold" from "buy" at Jefferies Group on Monday.

The firm said it lowered its rating on the energy company as it feels "the western portion of [the Eastern grid organizer] PJM will be more leveraged to power price improvements versus the east."

"Most of the planned new construction is in PJM East where PSEG power plant's are located and most of the scheduled coal plant retirements are in the western part of PJM," the company continued.

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Jefferies cut its price target on Public Service Enterprise to $41 from $39.

Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates PUBLIC SERVICE ENTRP GRP INC as a Buy with a ratings score of B+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate PUBLIC SERVICE ENTRP GRP INC (PEG) a BUY. This is driven by several positive factors, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its reasonable valuation levels, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income."

Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:

  • Compared to where it was 12 months ago, the stock is up, but it has so far lagged the appreciation in the S&P 500. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, it goes without saying that even the best stocks can fall in an overall down market. However, in any other environment, this stock still has good upside potential despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.76, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Despite the fact that PEG's debt-to-equity ratio is low, the quick ratio, which is currently 0.54, displays a potential problem in covering short-term cash needs.
  • PUBLIC SERVICE ENTRP GRP INC's earnings per share declined by 36.4% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has suffered a declining pattern of earnings per share over the past year. However, we anticipate this trend reversing over the coming year. During the past fiscal year, PUBLIC SERVICE ENTRP GRP INC reported lower earnings of $2.45 versus $2.51 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.72 versus $2.45).
  • PEG, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 7.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 2.6%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: PEG Ratings Report

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