Ensco (ESV) Upgraded to “Neutral” at JPMorgan Chase & Co.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded shares of Ensco (NYSE:ESV) from an underweight rating to a neutral rating in a research note published on Friday, MarketBeat.com reports. The firm currently has $8.00 price target on the offshore drilling services provider’s stock.

ESV has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Piper Jaffray Companies reiterated a hold rating and set a $6.25 price objective on shares of Ensco in a research report on Friday, July 20th. DNB Markets cut Ensco from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Friday, September 7th. Susquehanna Bancshares set a $8.00 price objective on Ensco and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Friday, July 27th. Wells Fargo & Co upgraded Ensco from a market perform rating to an outperform rating and set a $11.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Tuesday. Finally, Tudor Pickering upgraded Ensco from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, July 12th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have given a hold rating, eight have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. Ensco has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $7.61.

Ensco stock traded up $0.15 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $8.71. 12,599,981 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 13,426,096. The stock has a market cap of $3.69 billion, a PE ratio of -16.75 and a beta of 1.86. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.59, a quick ratio of 2.66 and a current ratio of 2.66. Ensco has a 12-month low of $4.10 and a 12-month high of $9.51.

Ensco (NYSE:ESV) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 25th. The offshore drilling services provider reported ($0.30) EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.33) by $0.03. The company had revenue of $458.50 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $449.69 million. Ensco had a negative return on equity of 4.51% and a negative net margin of 29.25%. Ensco’s revenue for the quarter was up .2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned ($0.10) earnings per share. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that Ensco will post -1.34 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 21st. Shareholders of record on Monday, September 10th were issued a dividend of $0.01 per share. This represents a $0.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.46%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, September 7th. Ensco’s dividend payout ratio is presently -7.69%.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in ESV. Whittier Trust Co. of Nevada Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Ensco by 254.5% in the second quarter. Whittier Trust Co. of Nevada Inc. now owns 11,322 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $629,000 after acquiring an additional 8,128 shares during the period. Arizona State Retirement System boosted its stake in shares of Ensco by 2.9% in the second quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 303,474 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $2,203,000 after acquiring an additional 8,482 shares during the period. Check Capital Management Inc. CA boosted its stake in Ensco by 39.5% during the second quarter. Check Capital Management Inc. CA now owns 31,525 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $229,000 after buying an additional 8,930 shares during the last quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. boosted its stake in Ensco by 10.3% during the second quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. now owns 118,967 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $864,000 after buying an additional 11,143 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Aperio Group LLC boosted its stake in Ensco by 2.3% during the second quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 505,341 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $3,669,000 after buying an additional 11,308 shares during the last quarter. 97.58% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Ensco Company Profile

Ensco plc provides offshore contract drilling services to the oil and gas industry worldwide. It operates through three segments: Floaters, Jackups, and Other. The company owns and operates an offshore drilling rig fleet of 65 rigs, including 32 located in the Middle East, Africa, and the Asia Pacific, which comprise 3 rigs under construction; 14 located in North and South America, such as Brazil; and 19 located in Europe and the Mediterranean.

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Analyst Recommendations for Ensco (NYSE:ESV)

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