Zacks Investment Research Downgrades AK Steel (AKS) to Hold
AK Steel (NYSE:AKS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Wednesday.
According to Zacks, “AK Steel should benefit from the strength in the automotive market and the Precision Partners acquisition. The company’s sustained initiatives to manage costs should also support its bottom line. The acquisition of the Severstal Dearborn plant is expected to boost AK Steel’s future earnings and improve its credit profile and liquidity. The buyout has provided the company an access to highly modernized and upgraded steelmaking equipment and facilities. However, AK Steel faces weakness in electrical steel pricing due to global overcapacity. It is also exposed to a volatile raw material pricing environment. The U.S. steel industry is also not out of the woods yet. AK Steel has also underperformed the industry it belongs to over the past six months.”
Several other equities analysts have also weighed in on the stock. Jefferies Group lowered shares of AK Steel from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and reduced their price target for the company from $6.64 to $6.50 in a research report on Tuesday, January 9th. Cowen restated a “hold” rating and set a $7.00 price target on shares of AK Steel in a research report on Thursday, January 4th. Longbow Research upgraded shares of AK Steel from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price target for the company from $5.53 to $7.00 in a research report on Wednesday, December 20th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded shares of AK Steel from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and increased their price target for the company from $6.00 to $7.00 in a research report on Thursday, December 7th. Finally, upgraded shares of AK Steel from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report on Tuesday, November 21st. Nine equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eight have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $7.54.
AK Steel (NYSE:AKS) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 31st. The basic materials company reported $0.02 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.03 by ($0.01). AK Steel had a net margin of 0.92% and a return on equity of 140.37%. equities analysts forecast that AK Steel will post 0.26 EPS for the current year.
A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of AKS. State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D bought a new position in AK Steel during the third quarter worth about $81,614,000. BW Gestao de Investimentos Ltda. bought a new position in AK Steel during the second quarter worth about $9,855,000. Creative Planning boosted its position in AK Steel by 66.7% during the fourth quarter. Creative Planning now owns 2,327,366 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $13,173,000 after purchasing an additional 931,560 shares during the period. Brandywine Global Investment Management LLC bought a new position in AK Steel during the second quarter worth about $5,860,000. Finally, Ameriprise Financial Inc. boosted its position in AK Steel by 29.9% during the second quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 3,760,681 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $24,709,000 after purchasing an additional 865,110 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 65.25% of the company’s stock.
About AK Steel
AK Steel Holding Corporation is a producer of flat-rolled carbon, stainless and electrical steels, and tubular products through its subsidiary, AK Steel Corporation (AK Steel). The Company also operates blast furnaces and electric arc furnaces. As of December 31, 2016, its operations included eight steelmaking and finishing plants, two coke plants and two tube manufacturing plants across states, including Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, and a tube manufacturing plant in Mexico.
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