B. Riley started coverage on shares of Spark Energy (NASDAQ:SPKE) in a report released on Thursday morning, The Fly reports. The brokerage issued a neutral rating and a $10.00 price target on the utilities provider’s stock.

A number of other analysts have also weighed in on SPKE. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Spark Energy from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $8.75 price target for the company in a report on Wednesday, January 9th. BidaskClub lowered shares of Spark Energy from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a report on Saturday, January 19th. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Spark Energy from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a report on Tuesday, February 19th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Spark Energy currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $12.67.

NASDAQ SPKE opened at $8.66 on Thursday. The company has a market cap of $302.59 million, a PE ratio of -18.04 and a beta of -0.53. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.54, a current ratio of 2.06 and a quick ratio of 2.03. Spark Energy has a 1-year low of $7.20 and a 1-year high of $13.35.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, March 1st were given a dividend of $0.1813 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, February 28th. This represents a $0.73 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 8.37%. Spark Energy’s dividend payout ratio is -152.08%.

In related news, CEO Nathan Kroeker sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, February 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $9.90, for a total value of $49,500.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 95,449 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $944,945.10. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Insiders own 67.63% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Nordea Investment Management AB lifted its position in Spark Energy by 54.4% in the 3rd quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 507,331 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $4,185,000 after acquiring an additional 178,854 shares in the last quarter. Peregrine Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Spark Energy by 49.8% in the 4th quarter. Peregrine Capital Management LLC now owns 398,023 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $2,957,000 after acquiring an additional 132,336 shares in the last quarter. Virtu Financial LLC bought a new stake in Spark Energy in the 4th quarter valued at $84,000. Marshall Wace LLP bought a new stake in Spark Energy in the 3rd quarter valued at $188,000. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc lifted its position in Spark Energy by 0.8% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 616,598 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $5,087,000 after acquiring an additional 4,886 shares in the last quarter. 32.46% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Spark Energy Company Profile

Spark Energy, Inc, through its subsidiaries, operates as an independent retail energy services company in the United States. It operates through two segments, Retail Electricity and Retail Natural Gas. The company is involved in the retail distribution of electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, and industrial customers.

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