Friday, December 13, 2013

Anadarko gets three downgrades after court decision, shares Down 11.5%

Anadarko Petroleum (APC) almost certainly will appeal yesterday's court ruling against it in the Tronox litigation: "We vehemently disagree with the judge's decision... We fully expect to pursue every avenue available to us through the appellate process to protect the interests of our stakeholders, once a final judgment including damages has been rendered."

The severity of the ruling for APC will come down to damages: While the judge found that the trust is entitled to recover $14.17B, APC may be able to lower the figure by $9B for offsetting costs it may have incurred from the Tronox transaction.

J.P. Morgan downgrades APC to Underweight and a $77 price target, while Citi and Global Hunter cut shares to Neutral from Buy; Credit Suisse views $65-$70 as a potential floor level valuation.

Jefferies, maintaining a Buy rating and $111 price target, believes APC could pursue more aggressive dividend/buyback moves to instill shareholder confidence that the ruling will be found excessive.

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