Barclays downgraded shares of Western Gas Equity Partners (NYSE:WGP) from an overweight rating to an equal weight rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday, January 17th, Marketbeat Ratings reports. They currently have $45.00 price objective on the pipeline company’s stock, down from their prior price objective of $51.00.
WGP has been the topic of a number of other research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Western Gas Equity Partners from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $45.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, September 27th. Bank of America began coverage on Western Gas Equity Partners in a research report on Tuesday, January 9th. They issued a neutral rating on the stock. Seaport Global Securities began coverage on Western Gas Equity Partners in a research report on Tuesday, October 10th. They issued a buy rating and a $49.00 target price on the stock. Morgan Stanley dropped their target price on Western Gas Equity Partners from $45.00 to $40.00 and set an equal weight rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, November 2nd. Finally, TheStreet lowered Western Gas Equity Partners from a b rating to a c+ rating in a research report on Monday, October 16th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $48.58.
Shares of Western Gas Equity Partners (NYSE:WGP) traded down $1.56 during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $37.30. The stock had a trading volume of 409,646 shares, compared to its average volume of 172,958. Western Gas Equity Partners has a 1-year low of $33.92 and a 1-year high of $47.82. The stock has a market capitalization of $8,166.20, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.47 and a beta of 1.45. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.84, a current ratio of 0.91 and a quick ratio of 0.91.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, February 22nd. Stockholders of record on Thursday, February 1st will be paid a dividend of $0.5488 per share. This represents a $2.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 5.88%. This is an increase from Western Gas Equity Partners’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.54. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, January 31st. Western Gas Equity Partners’s dividend payout ratio is presently 132.73%.
Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in WGP. Neuberger Berman Group LLC raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Equity Partners by 3.1% during the 3rd quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 11,536,740 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $475,083,000 after buying an additional 343,660 shares during the period. Chickasaw Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Equity Partners by 5.3% during the 4th quarter. Chickasaw Capital Management LLC now owns 5,350,896 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $198,839,000 after buying an additional 268,815 shares during the period. ING Groep NV raised its stake in shares of Western Gas Equity Partners by 360.0% during the 3rd quarter. ING Groep NV now owns 230,000 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $9,471,000 after buying an additional 180,000 shares during the period. First Trust Advisors LP acquired a new position in shares of Western Gas Equity Partners during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $3,957,000. Finally, State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D acquired a new position in Western Gas Equity Partners in the 3rd quarter valued at $2,878,000. 18.50% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
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About Western Gas Equity Partners
Western Gas Equity Partners, LP is a limited partnership. The Company is formed to own approximately three types of partnership interests in Western Gas Partners, LP (WES). WES is an master limited partnership (MLP) engaged in the business of gathering, compressing, treating, processing and transporting natural gas, and gathering, stabilizing and transporting condensate, natural gas liquids (NGLs) and crude oil.
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