Avista Corp. (NYSE:AVA) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Avista Corp. is a diversified energy company with utility and subsidiary operations located throughout North America. Avista Corp. also operates Avista Capital, which owns all the company’s non-regulated energy and non-energy businesses. Avista Capital companies include Avista Energy, Avista Energy Canada, Ltd., Avista Power, Avista Advantage, Avista Labs, Avista Fiber, Avista Communiations, Avista Development and Pentzer Corporation. (PRESS RELEASE) “

Other analysts have also issued reports about the company. Williams Capital raised their price objective on Avista Corp. from $38.00 to $40.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, September 22nd. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $42.00 price objective on shares of Avista Corp. in a research note on Wednesday, June 22nd.

Avista Corp. (NYSE:AVA) traded down 1.56% during trading on Tuesday, hitting $39.11. The stock had a trading volume of 167,719 shares. The company has a market cap of $2.49 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.01 and a beta of 0.40. The company has a 50-day moving average of $41.39 and a 200 day moving average of $41.63. Avista Corp. has a 52 week low of $32.61 and a 52 week high of $45.22.

Avista Corp. (NYSE:AVA) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.43 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.45 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $234.79 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $316.24 million. Avista Corp. had a return on equity of 8.32% and a net margin of 9.38%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 5.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.40 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Avista Corp. will post $2.08 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 15th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, September 1st were given a $0.3425 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, August 30th. This represents a $1.37 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.50%. Avista Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 64.02%.

In other Avista Corp. news, SVP Jason R. Thackston sold 950 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $40.90, for a total value of $38,855.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 17,232 shares in the company, valued at $704,788.80. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Marian M. Durkin sold 3,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $42.56, for a total value of $148,960.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 67,245 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,861,947.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.07% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Washington Trust Bank increased its position in Avista Corp. by 1.0% in the third quarter. Washington Trust Bank now owns 4,012 shares of the company’s stock valued at $168,000 after buying an additional 38 shares in the last quarter. Mason Street Advisors LLC purchased a new position in Avista Corp. during the second quarter valued at approximately $554,000. IFP Advisors Inc increased its position in Avista Corp. by 1.4% in the second quarter. IFP Advisors Inc now owns 19,845 shares of the company’s stock valued at $889,000 after buying an additional 267 shares in the last quarter. Investment Centers of America Inc. purchased a new position in Avista Corp. during the second quarter valued at approximately $203,000. Finally, Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. increased its position in Avista Corp. by 3.0% in the second quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 328,254 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,706,000 after buying an additional 9,678 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 68.07% of the company’s stock.

Avista Corp. Company Profile

Avista Corporation is an electric and natural gas utility with certain other business ventures. The Company operates through two business segments: Avista Utilities, and Alaska Electric Light and Power Company (AEL&P). Avista Utilities segment generates, transmits and distributes electricity, and distributes natural gas serving electric and natural gas customers in eastern Washington and northern Idaho and natural gas customers in parts of Oregon.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:AVA

Receive News & Stock Ratings for Avista Corp. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Avista Corp. and related stocks with our FREE daily email newsletter.