American Electric Power Company Inc (NYSE:AEP) was the recipient of a significant growth in short interest during the month of January. As of January 31st, there was short interest totalling 8,500,000 shares, a growth of 7.2% from the January 15th total of 7,930,000 shares. Approximately 1.7% of the company’s shares are short sold. Based on an average daily volume of 2,400,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.5 days.

Shares of AEP stock opened at $103.76 on Friday. The stock has a fifty day moving average of $98.46 and a 200 day moving average of $93.45. American Electric Power has a 52 week low of $79.02 and a 52 week high of $104.97. The firm has a market capitalization of $51.25 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.02, a PEG ratio of 4.14 and a beta of 0.08. The company has a quick ratio of 0.36, a current ratio of 0.48 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.27.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, March 10th. Investors of record on Monday, February 10th will be paid a $0.70 dividend. This represents a $2.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.70%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, February 7th. American Electric Power’s payout ratio is 70.89%.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Beese Fulmer Investment Management Inc. lifted its position in American Electric Power by 0.5% during the fourth quarter. Beese Fulmer Investment Management Inc. now owns 18,661 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,764,000 after buying an additional 100 shares during the period. Mission Wealth Management LP lifted its position in American Electric Power by 2.1% during the fourth quarter. Mission Wealth Management LP now owns 5,127 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $485,000 after buying an additional 106 shares during the period. Pittenger & Anderson Inc. lifted its position in American Electric Power by 0.4% during the fourth quarter. Pittenger & Anderson Inc. now owns 30,415 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $2,875,000 after buying an additional 110 shares during the period. Wedbush Securities Inc. lifted its position in American Electric Power by 1.0% during the third quarter. Wedbush Securities Inc. now owns 10,989 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,030,000 after buying an additional 111 shares during the period. Finally, Cedar Brook Financial Partners LLC lifted its position in American Electric Power by 4.5% during the third quarter. Cedar Brook Financial Partners LLC now owns 2,632 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $247,000 after buying an additional 113 shares during the period. 73.63% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

AEP has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. Royal Bank of Canada upgraded shares of American Electric Power from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and raised their target price for the stock from $96.00 to $103.00 in a report on Wednesday, January 15th. SunTrust Banks set a $102.00 target price on shares of American Electric Power and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, October 25th. Zacks Investment Research lowered American Electric Power from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $101.00 price target for the company. in a research note on Wednesday, January 15th. Mizuho lowered American Electric Power from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Friday, January 3rd. Finally, Morgan Stanley raised their price target on American Electric Power from $95.00 to $107.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 29th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $98.85.

American Electric Power Company Profile

American Electric Power Company, Inc, an electric public utility holding company, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity for sale to retail and wholesale customers in the United States. The company generates electricity using coal and lignite, natural gas, nuclear, hydroelectric, solar, wind, and other energy sources.

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