Halliburton (HAL) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research to Strong Sell

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Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Halliburton (NYSE:HAL) from a hold rating to a strong sell rating in a research note published on Friday morning.

According to Zacks, “With pipeline takeaway capacity constraints in the Permian Basin likely to dampen investor confidence, the investment thesis on Halliburton is revised downward. Investors were spooked after the company warned that a slowdown in the oil and gas rich-Permian Basin activity due to pipeline bottleneck will be a drag on fourth quarter earnings. Moreover, transportation bottlenecks in the region has also led to lower producer spending, denting the demand for Halliburton’s market-leading hydraulic fracturing services in North America. Finally, with the failure of Baker Hughes acquisition, HAL had to book a massive $3.5 billion in breakup charges that stretched its balance sheet. Taking into account all these factors, Halliburton is currently viewed as a risky bet. “

Several other equities analysts have also commented on HAL. Morgan Stanley assumed coverage on Halliburton in a research report on Tuesday, September 18th. They set an overweight rating and a $50.00 price target on the stock. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $60.00 price target on Halliburton and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Monday, September 17th. UBS Group set a $42.00 price target on Halliburton and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, December 20th. Seaport Global Securities set a $46.00 price target on Halliburton and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 23rd. Finally, Macquarie set a $40.00 price target on Halliburton and gave the stock a hold rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 23rd. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating, twenty-two have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $50.16.

Shares of NYSE HAL traded down $0.17 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $30.70. The stock had a trading volume of 11,330,194 shares, compared to its average volume of 10,863,865. The firm has a market capitalization of $26.28 billion, a P/E ratio of 25.16, a P/E/G ratio of 1.36 and a beta of 1.14. Halliburton has a 1-year low of $24.70 and a 1-year high of $57.86. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.16, a current ratio of 2.31 and a quick ratio of 1.73.

Halliburton (NYSE:HAL) last released its quarterly earnings data on Monday, October 22nd. The oilfield services company reported $0.50 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.49 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $6.17 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $6.10 billion. Halliburton had a return on equity of 20.42% and a net margin of 0.70%. The company’s revenue was up 13.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.42 EPS. On average, equities research analysts expect that Halliburton will post 1.86 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, December 27th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, December 6th were issued a $0.18 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, December 5th. This represents a $0.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.35%. Halliburton’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 59.02%.

In other news, VP Anne L. Beaty sold 7,200 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $32.33, for a total value of $232,776.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 62,196 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,010,796.68. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, VP Anne L. Beaty sold 2,548 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $29.48, for a total value of $75,115.04. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 56,663 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,670,425.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 12,787 shares of company stock valued at $404,538 over the last quarter. Company insiders own 0.54% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Franklin Resources Inc. boosted its position in Halliburton by 644.7% during the 3rd quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 14,927,010 shares of the oilfield services company’s stock valued at $604,991,000 after purchasing an additional 12,922,480 shares during the period. Dodge & Cox boosted its position in Halliburton by 73,106.2% during the 3rd quarter. Dodge & Cox now owns 6,734,967 shares of the oilfield services company’s stock valued at $272,968,000 after purchasing an additional 6,725,767 shares during the period. Sanders Capital LLC boosted its position in Halliburton by 24.8% during the 3rd quarter. Sanders Capital LLC now owns 19,776,422 shares of the oilfield services company’s stock valued at $883,006,000 after purchasing an additional 3,932,014 shares during the period. Macquarie Group Ltd. boosted its position in Halliburton by 24.6% during the 3rd quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 18,166,419 shares of the oilfield services company’s stock valued at $736,285,000 after purchasing an additional 3,586,694 shares during the period. Finally, Capital International Investors boosted its position in Halliburton by 62.6% during the 3rd quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 8,644,460 shares of the oilfield services company’s stock valued at $350,360,000 after purchasing an additional 3,328,011 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 78.02% of the company’s stock.

Halliburton Company Profile

Halliburton Company provides a range of services and products to oil and natural gas companies worldwide. The company's Completion and Production segment offers production enhancement services, including stimulation and sand control services; and cementing services, such as bonding the well, well casing, and casing equipment.

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