Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Buckeye Partners (NYSE:BPL) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Tuesday morning.

According to Zacks, “In the past one month, Buckeye Partners’ units have outperformed its industry's rally. Buckeye Partners has an attractive portfolio of refined petroleum-product transportation and storage assets in key geographical markets. Its organic capital growth projects will drive the performance in the domestic as well as in the international arenas. Along with the ongoing long-term projects of the partnership, the expansion of facilities in Tampa, and Jacksonville will increase connectivity and optionality for its customers. However, rising debt expenses and gradual stability in energy prices are a matter of great concern for this partnership. The Buckeye Partners’ dependence on limited group of customers for bulk of its storage revenues could adversely impact the partnership’s performance. Also, stringent government regulations are headwinds.”

BPL has been the topic of a number of other research reports. Stifel Nicolaus decreased their target price on Buckeye Partners from $45.00 to $43.00 and set a buy rating on the stock in a research report on Monday, August 6th. Morgan Stanley decreased their target price on Buckeye Partners from $42.00 to $39.00 and set an equal weight rating on the stock in a research report on Friday, June 1st. SunTrust Banks lowered Buckeye Partners from a hold rating to a sell rating and set a $72.00 target price on the stock. in a research report on Monday, July 23rd. Barclays reduced their price objective on Buckeye Partners from $43.00 to $37.00 and set an equal weight rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, July 11th. Finally, Bank of America reduced their price objective on Buckeye Partners from $41.00 to $36.00 and set a neutral rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday, July 24th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $46.75.

Shares of NYSE:BPL opened at $36.30 on Tuesday. Buckeye Partners has a 1 year low of $32.03 and a 1 year high of $59.67. The company has a market cap of $5.43 billion, a PE ratio of 10.91 and a beta of 1.18. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.02, a quick ratio of 0.70 and a current ratio of 1.01.

Buckeye Partners (NYSE:BPL) last announced its earnings results on Friday, August 3rd. The pipeline company reported $0.59 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.69 by ($0.10). Buckeye Partners had a net margin of 11.19% and a return on equity of 9.12%. The business had revenue of $940.84 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $811.12 million. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $0.80 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 16.1% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts expect that Buckeye Partners will post 2.86 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, August 20th. Investors of record on Monday, August 13th were paid a $1.2625 dividend. This is an increase from Buckeye Partners’s previous quarterly dividend of $1.24. This represents a $5.05 annualized dividend and a yield of 13.91%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, August 10th. Buckeye Partners’s dividend payout ratio is currently 152.11%.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of BPL. Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors LP raised its stake in Buckeye Partners by 104.8% in the 1st quarter. Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors LP now owns 10,962,616 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $388,338,000 after purchasing an additional 5,608,858 shares during the last quarter. Chickasaw Capital Management LLC raised its stake in Buckeye Partners by 43.2% in the 2nd quarter. Chickasaw Capital Management LLC now owns 5,813,968 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $204,361,000 after purchasing an additional 1,755,207 shares during the last quarter. Summit Trail Advisors LLC raised its stake in Buckeye Partners by 3,193.5% in the 1st quarter. Summit Trail Advisors LLC now owns 1,102,071 shares of the pipeline company’s stock valued at $1,102,000 after purchasing an additional 1,068,609 shares during the last quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. increased its stake in shares of Buckeye Partners by 5.7% in the 2nd quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. now owns 12,185,717 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $603,802,000 after acquiring an additional 661,654 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Brookfield Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Buckeye Partners by 19.5% in the 1st quarter. Brookfield Asset Management Inc. now owns 3,449,482 shares of the pipeline company’s stock worth $128,976,000 after acquiring an additional 563,639 shares during the last quarter. 67.08% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Buckeye Partners Company Profile

Buckeye Partners, L.P. owns and operates liquid petroleum products pipelines in the United States and internationally. The company operates through three segments: Domestic Pipelines & Terminals, Global Marine Terminals, and Merchant Services. The Domestic Pipelines & Terminals segment transports liquid petroleum products, including gasoline, jet fuel, and various distillates; refined petroleum products; and crude oil.

Further Reading: Outstanding Shares and The Effect on Share Price

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Analyst Recommendations for Buckeye Partners (NYSE:BPL)

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