Is Duke Energy Corp (NYSE:DUK) a Buy?

Several analysts have recently weighed in on Duke Energy Corp (NYSE:DUK), issuing notes to investors. Julien Dumoulin Smith of UBS Downgrading their Hold rating on the stock today with a $90.00 price target, or 8.64% upside to the last closing price. According to Tip Ranks, Julien Dumoulin Smith is ranked 1466 out of 3448 analysts. The stocks he covers yield an average of 4.8% growth in the one year following his recommendations.

Gary Hovis of Argus Research also released a note to investors 2 month ago reiterating the firm’s Buy stance on Duke Energy Corp (DUK).

“The expected rise in Duke Energy’s construction spending for new power plants, infrastructure improvements and alterative energy projects should have little, if any, impact on long-term earnings growth. Duke is now benefiting from positive changes in its regulated electric utility rate structures, an improving economy in its Carolinas and Florida service areas, and an expectation for moderate kilowatt-hour sales growth in both the wholesale power segment and the company’s portfolio of regulated utilities. ”

Hovis also added, “In our view, these factors make the DUK shares a sound long-term holding for investors seeking moderate share price appreciation and a solid and growing dividend. We think the current annualized dividend payout of $3.18 per share is secure based on the company’s growing cash flow, improvement in balance sheet strength and clearer earnings visibility. In our view, these factors should combine to generate total returns to shareholders of about 7%-8% annually over the next four-to-five years.”

According to TipRanks.com Gary Hovis 798 out of 3448 analysts and has an average one year return of 13.8% on the stocks he covers with a 93% success rate.

Another analyst at RBC Capital has a Bullish stance on the stock. Shelby Tucker issued a note 2 months ago with a Buy rating on the stock and $85.00 price target or 2.61% upside to the last closing price. According to Tip Ranks, Tucker is ranked 1240 out of 3448 analysts. The stocks he covers yield an average return of 7.2% in the year following his recommendations.

“We are increasing the premium on Duke to 20% from 15%, bringing the P/E multiple up from 16.67 xs to 17.5xs. With the divestiture of the Midwest generation assets, Duke’s profile is nearly entirely regulated. The increased visibility into future earnings merits multiple expansions and a larger premium. We are leaving our 2014, 2015 and 2016 EPS estimates unchanged at $4.66, $4.87, and $5.10 respectively.”

Duke Energy Corp (NYSE:DUK) is trading up .75% today to $84.86 in afternoon trade.