Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Allete Inc. (NYSE:ALE) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report published on Monday morning.

According to Zacks, “ALLETE is an energy company. In addition to its electric utilities, Minnesota Power and Superior Water, Light and Power of Wisconsin, ALLETE owns ALLETE Clean Energy, based in Duluth, U.S. Water Services headquartered in St. Michael, Minn., BNI Energy in Center, N.D., and has an eight percent equity interest in the American Transmission Co. “

A number of other equities research analysts also recently weighed in on ALE. Williams Capital upgraded shares of Allete from a hold rating to a buy rating and raised their price target for the company from $60.00 to $63.00 in a research note on Wednesday, May 25th. KeyCorp reiterated an outperform rating and set a $65.50 target price (up from $61.50) on shares of Allete in a research report on Friday, July 1st. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. reiterated a sell rating on shares of Allete in a research report on Monday, July 4th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the stock. Allete currently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $62.10.

Allete (NYSE:ALE) opened at 62.19 on Monday. The firm has a market cap of $3.07 billion, a PE ratio of 20.42 and a beta of 0.56. Allete has a 12-month low of $47.93 and a 12-month high of $65.41. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $60.47 and a 200 day moving average of $59.23.

Allete (NYSE:ALE) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.50 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.51 by $0.01. Allete had a net margin of 10.02% and a return on equity of 8.13%. The company earned $314.80 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $326.70 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.48 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 2.6% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Allete will post $3.12 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 15th were issued a dividend of $0.52 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, August 11th. This represents a $2.08 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.34%. Allete’s payout ratio is 68.65%.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. LS Investment Advisors LLC raised its position in Allete by 4.3% in the second quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 1,639 shares of the company’s stock valued at $106,000 after buying an additional 68 shares during the last quarter. Advisor Group Inc. purchased a new position in Allete during the second quarter valued at about $113,000. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC purchased a new position in Allete during the second quarter valued at about $144,000. Acrospire Investment Management LLC raised its position in Allete by 69.0% in the second quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 2,704 shares of the company’s stock valued at $175,000 after buying an additional 1,104 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio raised its position in Allete by 2.6% in the second quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 2,856 shares of the company’s stock valued at $185,000 after buying an additional 73 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 71.24% of the company’s stock.

About Allete

ALLETE, Inc is an energy company. The Company operates through three segments. The Regulated Operations segment includes its regulated utilities, Minnesota Power and Superior Water, Light and Power Company (SWL&P), as well as its investment in American Transmission Company LLC (ATC), a regulated utility that owns and maintains electric transmission assets.

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