Spark Energy Inc. (NASDAQ:SPKE) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Spark Energy, Inc. is an independent retail energy services company. It provides residential and commercial customers across the United States with an alternative choice for their natural gas and electricity. The company is involved in the retail distribution of natural gas and electricity. It also offers renewable and carbon neutral products. Spark Energy, Inc. is headquartered in Houston, Texas. “

Other analysts have also issued reports about the company. Wunderlich lifted their price objective on Spark Energy from $30.00 to $35.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, August 12th. FBR & Co reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $33.00 price objective (up from $32.00) on shares of Spark Energy in a research report on Thursday, August 11th. Janney Montgomery Scott upgraded Spark Energy from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $34.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Wednesday, July 27th. Finally, Ladenburg Thalmann started coverage on Spark Energy in a report on Friday, August 19th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $27.00 target price on the stock. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Spark Energy presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $30.50.

Analyst Recommendations for Spark Energy (NASDAQ:SPKE)

Spark Energy (NASDAQ:SPKE) opened at 25.28 on Wednesday. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $28.66 and a 200-day moving average price of $27.66. Spark Energy has a one year low of $15.91 and a one year high of $35.63. The firm has a market cap of $164.14 million, a P/E ratio of 12.94 and a beta of -2.09.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, September 13th. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 29th were paid a $0.3625 dividend. This represents a $1.45 annualized dividend and a yield of 5.74%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, August 25th.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of SPKE. American Century Companies Inc. raised its position in Spark Energy by 355.5% in the second quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 225,613 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,457,000 after buying an additional 176,080 shares during the period. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. raised its position in Spark Energy by 189.1% in the second quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 222,567 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,356,000 after buying an additional 145,574 shares during the period. AQR Capital Management LLC raised its position in Spark Energy by 505.5% in the second quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 139,846 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,621,000 after buying an additional 116,750 shares during the period. Royce & Associates LP bought a new position in Spark Energy during the first quarter valued at $1,800,000. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP bought a new position in Spark Energy during the second quarter valued at $2,974,000. 31.59% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Spark Energy

Spark Energy, Inc is an independent retail energy services company. The Company provides residential and commercial customers in United States with an alternative for their natural gas and electricity. The Company operates in two segments: Retail Natural Gas Segment and Retail Electricity Segment. It operates in approximately 50 utility service territories across over 20 states and has approximately 328,000 residential customers and over 19,000 commercial customers, which translates to approximately 415,000 renewable energy credits (RCEs).

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:SPKE

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