(By Balachander) Northeast Utilities System (NYSE:NU) shares were downgraded to "Hold" from "Buy" by Deutsche Bank analyst Caroline Bone, following the company's second-quarter results.
Bone, who raised price target on the stock to $40 from $39, wrote that the stock is up 10 percent since the start of June having outperformed the S&P Utilities by 3 percent and the market by 2 percent.
"NU remains a core regulated utility holding with above average earnings growth potential, but we can no longer justify a Buy rating," the analyst wrote in a note.
The company earned 15 cents a share on operating revenue of $1.63 billion for the three months ended June 30. Results included charges of 30 cents a share related to the closing of the merger between NU and NSTAR and various related regulatory settlements.
Northeast Utilities operates New England's largest energy delivery system and provides energy delivery services to residential, commercial, and industrial customers in Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts.
The company operates roughly 1,200 megawatts of primarily fossil fueled electricity generation assets. In addition, it operates a natural gas distribution system in Connecticut as well as offers gas transportation and electric transmission services.
The stock, which has been trading in the 52-week range of $30.02 to $40.86, traded 1.71 percent lower at $39.24 on Wednesday.