Shares of FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE:FE) gapped up before the market opened on Thursday . The stock had previously closed at $43.05, but opened at $43.62. FirstEnergy shares last traded at $43.85, with a volume of 137,316 shares trading hands.

Several equities analysts have commented on the stock. TheStreet cut shares of Hostess Brands from a “b” rating to a “f” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 18th. Morgan Stanley reissued an “underweight” rating and set a C$18.00 target price on shares of WestJet Airlines in a research report on Friday, April 5th. KeyCorp reissued an “overweight” rating and set a $46.00 target price on shares of FirstEnergy in a research report on Wednesday, June 5th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut shares of EXACT Sciences from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 2nd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has issued a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $43.71.

The firm has a 50-day moving average of $43.45. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.63, a quick ratio of 0.47 and a current ratio of 0.60. The stock has a market capitalization of $23.34 billion, a PE ratio of 17.01, a P/E/G ratio of 2.92 and a beta of 0.30.

FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, July 23rd. The utilities provider reported $0.61 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.60 by $0.01. FirstEnergy had a net margin of 2.79% and a return on equity of 20.29%. The firm had revenue of $2.60 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.66 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.62 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 3.8% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, research analysts predict that FirstEnergy Corp. will post 2.5 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Sunday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, August 7th will be given a dividend of $0.38 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, August 6th. This represents a $1.52 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.45%. FirstEnergy’s dividend payout ratio is currently 58.69%.

In related news, Director Christopher D. Pappas purchased 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 30th. The shares were bought at an average price of $41.14 per share, with a total value of $123,420.00. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. 0.32% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position in shares of FirstEnergy by 12.5% during the 4th quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,332,403 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $50,028,000 after acquiring an additional 148,050 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC raised its position in shares of FirstEnergy by 6.4% during the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 6,393,048 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $239,645,000 after acquiring an additional 382,694 shares in the last quarter. Squarepoint Ops LLC raised its position in shares of FirstEnergy by 107.9% during the 4th quarter. Squarepoint Ops LLC now owns 56,600 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $2,125,000 after acquiring an additional 29,376 shares in the last quarter. MML Investors Services LLC raised its position in shares of FirstEnergy by 20.4% during the 4th quarter. MML Investors Services LLC now owns 15,628 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $587,000 after acquiring an additional 2,651 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan acquired a new stake in shares of FirstEnergy during the 4th quarter valued at approximately $488,000. 93.73% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE)

FirstEnergy Corp., through its subsidiaries, generates, transmits, and distributes electricity in the United States. The company operates through Regulated Distribution and Regulated Transmission segments. It owns and operates coal-fired, nuclear, hydroelectric, natural gas, wind, and solar power generating facilities.

Recommended Story: How to read a candlestick chart

Receive News & Ratings for FirstEnergy Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for FirstEnergy and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.