HollyFrontier (NYSE:HFC) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Monday.
According to Zacks, “HollyFrontier is one of the largest independent oil refiners in the U.S. with the capability to process a wide mix of crude. While its access to some of the fastest growing domestic markets bode well for the downstream operator, the Petro-Canada Lubricants acquisition has helped HollyFrontier expand into a high-margin, less competitive business. A strong financial position and attractive yields are other positives in the HFC story. However, HollyFrontier has been bogged down by contracting refining margins. In fact, the company delivered weaker–than-expected results in 4Q17 amid lower refined margins compared with 3Q17. Further, the U.S. refiners are feeling the pinch of higher RFS costs to comply with new cleaner gasoline production rules. Given these factors, we take a cautious stance on the prospects of the stock.”
HFC has been the topic of several other research reports. Piper Jaffray Companies reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $38.00 price target on shares of HollyFrontier in a research note on Friday, November 17th. Barclays boosted their price target on HollyFrontier from $47.00 to $57.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, November 14th. Argus upgraded HollyFrontier from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $53.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Monday, November 20th. Cowen reiterated a “market perform” rating and set a $38.00 price target (up previously from $35.00) on shares of HollyFrontier in a research note on Friday, December 8th. Finally, ValuEngine upgraded HollyFrontier from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Sunday, December 31st. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have assigned a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the stock. HollyFrontier presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $43.40.
HollyFrontier (NYSE:HFC) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 21st. The oil and gas company reported $0.70 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.82 by ($0.12). The firm had revenue of $3.99 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.85 billion. HollyFrontier had a net margin of 5.65% and a return on equity of 7.51%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 35.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted ($0.06) EPS. analysts expect that HollyFrontier will post 3.6 EPS for the current fiscal year.
In related news, SVP James M. Stump sold 30,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, December 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.21, for a total value of $1,536,300.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 41,849 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,143,087.29. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, Director James H. Lee sold 5,149 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.17, for a total value of $242,878.33. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 52,240 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,464,160.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 65,149 shares of company stock valued at $3,315,478. Insiders own 0.51% of the company’s stock.
A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in HFC. Aperio Group LLC raised its stake in HollyFrontier by 13.6% in the third quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 62,232 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $2,238,000 after buying an additional 7,429 shares in the last quarter. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. raised its holdings in HollyFrontier by 5.5% in the 3rd quarter. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. now owns 63,300 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $2,277,000 after acquiring an additional 3,300 shares during the last quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. raised its holdings in HollyFrontier by 52.3% in the 3rd quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. now owns 81,599 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $2,935,000 after acquiring an additional 28,033 shares during the last quarter. Stevens Capital Management LP acquired a new position in HollyFrontier in the 3rd quarter valued at $534,000. Finally, State of Wisconsin Investment Board raised its holdings in HollyFrontier by 5.2% in the 3rd quarter. State of Wisconsin Investment Board now owns 154,898 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $5,572,000 after acquiring an additional 7,628 shares during the last quarter. 86.08% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
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HollyFrontier Corporation is an independent petroleum refiner. The Company produces various light products, such as gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, specialty lubricant products, and specialty and modified asphalt. It segments include Refining and Holly Energy Partners, L.P. (HEP). The Refining segment includes the operations of the Company’s El Dorado, Kansas (the El Dorado Refinery); refinery facilities located in Tulsa, Oklahoma (collectively, the Tulsa Refineries); a refinery in Artesia, New Mexico that is operated in conjunction with crude oil distillation and vacuum distillation and other facilities situated 65 miles away in Lovington, New Mexico (collectively, the Navajo Refinery); refinery located in Cheyenne, Wyoming (the Cheyenne Refinery); a refinery in Woods Cross, Utah (the Woods Cross Refinery), and HollyFrontier Asphalt Company (HFC Asphalt).
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