BHP Billiton (BHP) Stock Rating Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research

BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday. The firm currently has a $53.00 target price on the mining company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s target price points to a potential upside of 10.86% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “BHP Billiton is poised to gain from its focus on investment plans across iron ore, copper, coal and petroleum. Recently, BHP Billiton entered an agreement to acquire 6.1% interest in SolGold, with which it will gain shares of the Cascabel copper-gold project in Ecuador. The company is also trying to make its operations more efficient on the back of smarter technology adoption across the entire value chain. Over the last year, BHP Billiton’s shares have outperformed the industry. BHP has entered agreements for the sale of its onshore U.S. assets for $10.8 billion, to simplify and strengthen its portfolio and generate shareholder. Moreover, strong cash flow position, lower debt levels and higher operational efficacy will likely strengthen BHP Billiton’s competency in the near term.”

BHP has been the subject of several other research reports. ValuEngine upgraded shares of BHP Billiton from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, September 14th. Deutsche Bank cut shares of BHP Billiton from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, September 10th. Finally, Investec cut shares of BHP Billiton from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, June 15th. Nine equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $48.20.

Shares of BHP opened at $47.81 on Thursday. BHP Billiton has a 12 month low of $40.19 and a 12 month high of $52.62. The firm has a market cap of $80.04 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.15, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.73 and a beta of 1.14. The company has a quick ratio of 2.24, a current ratio of 2.51 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.40.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Manning & Napier Group LLC raised its position in BHP Billiton by 2.6% during the third quarter. Manning & Napier Group LLC now owns 149,187 shares of the mining company’s stock worth $7,434,000 after acquiring an additional 3,790 shares in the last quarter. Lourd Capital LLC bought a new stake in BHP Billiton during the third quarter worth $306,000. Northern Trust Corp raised its position in BHP Billiton by 4.1% during the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 1,658,255 shares of the mining company’s stock worth $82,930,000 after acquiring an additional 65,526 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC raised its position in BHP Billiton by 2.2% during the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 2,225,815 shares of the mining company’s stock worth $111,313,000 after acquiring an additional 48,406 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BDO Wealth Advisors LLC bought a new stake in BHP Billiton during the second quarter worth $1,000,000. 3.32% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About BHP Billiton

BHP Billiton Limited discovers, acquires, develops, and markets natural resources worldwide. It operates through four segments: Petroleum, Copper, Iron Ore, and Coal. The company explores for copper, silver, lead, zinc, molybdenum, uranium, gold, and iron ores, as well as metallurgical coal, thermal energy coal, and oil and gas properties.

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