Williams Partners (WPZ) Getting Somewhat Positive Press Coverage, Study Finds

News coverage about Williams Partners (NYSE:WPZ) has trended somewhat positive this week, according to Accern Sentiment. The research group ranks the sentiment of news coverage by monitoring more than 20 million news and blog sources. Accern ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. Williams Partners earned a media sentiment score of 0.11 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned headlines about the pipeline company an impact score of 44.752843980404 out of 100, meaning that recent news coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an impact on the stock’s share price in the immediate future.

These are some of the news headlines that may have effected Accern Sentiment’s rankings:

Shares of Williams Partners traded down $0.44, reaching $39.91, during mid-day trading on Friday, MarketBeat Ratings reports. 1,320,890 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,838,291. The company has a market cap of $39.37 billion, a PE ratio of 24.19 and a beta of 1.46. The company has a current ratio of 1.17, a quick ratio of 1.09 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.73. Williams Partners has a 52 week low of $32.74 and a 52 week high of $44.06.

Williams Partners (NYSE:WPZ) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 2nd. The pipeline company reported $0.37 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.41 by ($0.04). Williams Partners had a return on equity of 5.42% and a net margin of 7.36%. The business had revenue of $2.08 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.11 billion. equities research analysts predict that Williams Partners will post 1.7 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 11th. Stockholders of record on Friday, May 4th were issued a dividend of $0.614 per share. This represents a $2.46 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 6.15%. This is a boost from Williams Partners’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.60. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, May 3rd. Williams Partners’s dividend payout ratio is 149.09%.

A number of research firms have issued reports on WPZ. Raymond James downgraded Williams Partners from a “strong-buy” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $44.00 price target for the company. in a research note on Monday, May 21st. Seaport Global Securities began coverage on Williams Partners in a research note on Wednesday, April 25th. They set a “buy” rating and a $40.00 price target for the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Williams Partners from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, February 27th. Deutsche Bank began coverage on Williams Partners in a research note on Thursday, April 19th. They set a “buy” rating and a $41.00 price target for the company. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus set a $48.00 price target on Williams Partners and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Saturday, February 17th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Williams Partners has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $44.54.

About Williams Partners

Williams Partners L.P. operates as an energy infrastructure company. It operates through Northeast G&P, Atlantic-Gulf, and West segments. The Northeast G&P segment engages in natural gas gathering, compression, processing, and NGL fractionation businesses in the Marcellus and Utica shale regions in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, New York, and Ohio.

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