Schlumberger (NYSE:SLB) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Schlumberger is the largest oilfield services player in the world with presence in every energy market. The firm's third quarter results showed that its international business, which constitutes a major portion of revenues, is finally starting to turn around. The company is a leading provider of technology for complex oilfield projects outside North America, enabling it to take up new offshore projects. In fact, the company is expecting more drilling activities to ramp up in the offshore resources. Moreover, the firm has been persistently rewarding shareholders with higher dividend yield than the industry over the past 15 years. However, the pipeline bottleneck problem in the Permian Basin has been hurting the firm’s operations in U.S. shale plays. Moreover, Schlumberger’s rising project startup costs, stemmed from new developments outside North America, is concerning. Therefore, the stock warrants a cautious stance.”

Other equities analysts have also issued reports about the stock. Wolfe Research assumed coverage on shares of Schlumberger in a report on Wednesday, October 10th. They issued a “market perform” rating on the stock. Credit Suisse Group decreased their target price on shares of Schlumberger from $82.00 to $71.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, October 22nd. Bank of America reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $52.00 target price (down from $69.00) on shares of Schlumberger in a report on Monday. ValuEngine raised shares of Schlumberger from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, October 4th. Finally, Morgan Stanley assumed coverage on shares of Schlumberger in a report on Tuesday, September 18th. They issued an “equal weight” rating and a $72.00 target price on the stock. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and seventeen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $74.50.

SLB stock opened at $42.32 on Wednesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38, a quick ratio of 0.85 and a current ratio of 1.13. Schlumberger has a 12 month low of $41.87 and a 12 month high of $80.35. The stock has a market capitalization of $61.10 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.21, a PEG ratio of 4.35 and a beta of 1.04.

Schlumberger (NYSE:SLB) last released its earnings results on Friday, October 19th. The oil and gas company reported $0.46 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.45 by $0.01. Schlumberger had a negative net margin of 2.00% and a positive return on equity of 6.55%. The firm had revenue of $8.50 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $8.57 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.42 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 7.6% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts forecast that Schlumberger will post 1.69 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other Schlumberger news, CFO Simon Ayat sold 60,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $56.60, for a total transaction of $3,396,000.00. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 234,008 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $13,244,852.80. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Insiders own 0.48% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of SLB. Bradley Foster & Sargent Inc. CT raised its position in Schlumberger by 2.6% in the second quarter. Bradley Foster & Sargent Inc. CT now owns 204,775 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $13,726,000 after purchasing an additional 5,123 shares during the period. Telemus Capital LLC raised its position in Schlumberger by 4.4% in the second quarter. Telemus Capital LLC now owns 56,417 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $3,782,000 after purchasing an additional 2,353 shares during the period. TD Asset Management Inc. raised its position in Schlumberger by 1.2% in the second quarter. TD Asset Management Inc. now owns 1,496,658 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $100,321,000 after purchasing an additional 17,201 shares during the period. Commonwealth Equity Services LLC raised its position in Schlumberger by 9.9% in the second quarter. Commonwealth Equity Services LLC now owns 197,420 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $13,233,000 after purchasing an additional 17,803 shares during the period. Finally, Portland Global Advisors LLC raised its position in Schlumberger by 2.8% in the second quarter. Portland Global Advisors LLC now owns 28,240 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $1,893,000 after purchasing an additional 770 shares during the period. 77.74% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Schlumberger

Schlumberger Limited supplies technology products and services to the oil and gas exploration and production industry worldwide. The company's Reservoir Characterization Group segment provides reservoir interpretation and data processing services; open and cased-hole services; slickline services; exploration and production pressure and flow-rate measurement services at the surface and downhole; software integrated solutions, such as software, consulting, information management, and IT infrastructure services; consulting services for reservoir characterization, field development planning, and production enhancement; and petrotechnical data services and training solutions, as well as integrated management services.

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