Encana (ECA) Price Target Cut to $16.00 by Analysts at Morgan Stanley

Encana (NYSE:ECA) (TSE:ECA) had its target price lowered by equities research analysts at Morgan Stanley from $18.00 to $16.00 in a research note issued to investors on Monday. The firm currently has a “buy” rating on the oil and gas company’s stock. Morgan Stanley’s price objective points to a potential upside of 32.12% from the company’s previous close.

ECA has been the subject of several other research reports. AltaCorp Capital cut Encana from an “outperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and set a $14.50 price objective for the company. in a report on Monday, January 15th. Desjardins upgraded Encana from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $16.00 price objective for the company in a report on Friday, January 12th. Societe Generale upgraded Encana from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $15.00 price objective for the company in a report on Thursday, February 15th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Encana from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, January 12th. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein upgraded Encana to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, February 16th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-two have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $15.24.

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ECA opened at $12.11 on Monday. Encana has a 1 year low of $8.01 and a 1 year high of $14.31. The stock has a market capitalization of $11,749.08, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.16, a PEG ratio of 1.67 and a beta of 2.01. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.62, a quick ratio of 1.37 and a current ratio of 1.37.

Encana (NYSE:ECA) (TSE:ECA) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 15th. The oil and gas company reported $0.12 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.10 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $1.21 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.06 billion. Encana had a return on equity of 6.25% and a net margin of 18.58%. analysts expect that Encana will post 0.72 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Encana announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback program on Thursday, February 15th that authorizes the company to buyback $400.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the oil and gas company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

In related news, Director Howard John Mayson acquired 2,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 1st. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $10.53 per share, for a total transaction of $26,325.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 25,104 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $264,345.12. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Margaret Anne Mckenzie acquired 10,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, February 16th. The shares were bought at an average price of $11.16 per share, with a total value of $111,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 22,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $245,520. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have acquired 24,500 shares of company stock valued at $267,185 over the last 90 days. Company insiders own 0.09% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of ECA. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its position in Encana by 2.0% during the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,096,767 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock worth $12,919,000 after acquiring an additional 21,051 shares during the last quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. lifted its position in Encana by 111.5% during the third quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 124,266 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock worth $1,464,000 after acquiring an additional 65,508 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its position in Encana by 22.3% during the third quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 3,908,977 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock worth $46,048,000 after acquiring an additional 711,636 shares during the last quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC acquired a new stake in Encana during the third quarter worth approximately $3,444,000. Finally, Sterling Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Encana by 67.0% during the third quarter. Sterling Capital Management LLC now owns 19,894 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock worth $234,000 after acquiring an additional 7,984 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 68.68% of the company’s stock.

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About Encana

Encana Corporation is an energy producer that is focused on developing its multi-basin portfolio of natural gas, oil and natural gas liquids (NGLs) producing plays. The Company’s operations also include the marketing of natural gas, oil and NGLs. All of its reserves and production are located in North America.

Analyst Recommendations for Encana (NYSE:ECA)

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