Investors Sell Shares of Hess (HES) on Strength (HES)

Investors sold shares of Hess Corp. (NYSE:HES) on strength during trading hours on Wednesday. $43.13 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $82.96 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $39.83 million out of the stock. Of all companies tracked, Hess had the 0th highest net out-flow for the day. Hess traded up $1.24 for the day and closed at $54.93

A number of research analysts have weighed in on HES shares. Macquarie reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $58.00 price objective (down previously from $63.00) on shares of Hess in a research report on Wednesday, February 21st. Barclays set a $47.00 price objective on shares of Hess and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Sunday, March 4th. Piper Jaffray reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $52.00 price objective on shares of Hess in a research report on Friday, February 23rd. UBS started coverage on shares of Hess in a research report on Wednesday, March 7th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $50.00 price objective for the company. Finally, JPMorgan Chase downgraded shares of Hess from a “neutral” rating to an “underweight” rating and set a $44.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Friday, December 15th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $50.63.

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The company has a current ratio of 2.53, a quick ratio of 2.43 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52. The stock has a market capitalization of $16,915.23, a price-to-earnings ratio of -11.93 and a beta of 1.45.

Hess (NYSE:HES) last released its quarterly earnings results on Monday, February 5th. The oil and gas producer reported ($1.01) earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of ($0.91) by ($0.10). Hess had a negative return on equity of 9.82% and a negative net margin of 74.55%. The company had revenue of $1.30 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.32 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned ($1.01) EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 6.5% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts forecast that Hess Corp. will post -1.92 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, March 29th. Investors of record on Monday, March 19th were given a dividend of $0.25 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, March 16th. This represents a $1.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.82%. Hess’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently -21.69%.

Hess declared that its board has authorized a stock repurchase program on Thursday, March 8th that authorizes the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the oil and gas producer to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

In related news, SVP Timothy B. Goodell sold 3,808 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, March 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.56, for a total transaction of $181,108.48. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 106,866 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,082,546.96. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Kevin Omar Meyers purchased 516 shares of Hess stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, March 6th. The shares were bought at an average price of $48.48 per share, with a total value of $25,015.68. Following the transaction, the director now owns 22,117 shares in the company, valued at $1,072,232.16. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 174,017 shares of company stock valued at $7,981,459. Insiders own 11.80% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. CoreCommodity Management LLC purchased a new stake in Hess during the 4th quarter valued at about $108,000. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC grew its stake in Hess by 453.4% during the 4th quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 2,651 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $126,000 after acquiring an additional 2,172 shares in the last quarter. NuWave Investment Management LLC purchased a new stake in Hess during the 4th quarter valued at about $141,000. Icon Wealth Partners LLC purchased a new stake in Hess during the 4th quarter valued at about $145,000. Finally, Exane Derivatives grew its stake in Hess by 65.2% during the 4th quarter. Exane Derivatives now owns 3,536 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $168,000 after acquiring an additional 1,395 shares in the last quarter. 92.38% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Hess

Hess Corporation, an exploration and production company, develops, produces, purchases, transports, and sells crude oil, natural gas liquids (NGLs), and natural gas. It operates through two segments, Exploration and Production, and Midstream. The company conducts production operations primarily in the United States, Denmark, the Malaysia/Thailand Joint Development Area, and Malaysia; and exploration activities primarily offshore Guyana, Suriname, Canada, and in the Gulf of Mexico.

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