Shares of Reliant Energy Inc., a Texas power retailer that posted losses in 13 of the past 17 quarters, had their first decline in almost three weeks after being downgraded by a Banc of America Securities analyst.
The shares (RRI:US) fell 26 cents, or 1.3 percent, to $20.56 in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The decline follows 13 straight gains by Reliant, including a 6 percent jump yesterday. The shares traded as low as $20, down 3.9 percent.
Banc of America's Daniel Scott cut his rating of the stock to ``sell'' from ``neutral'' a day after Houston-based Reliant made a presentation to analysts in New York. Scott, who doesn't own any Reliant shares, said the stock surpassed his price target of $17.50.
``Reliant has had a remarkable run over the last 12 months,'' Scott said in his report. The shares have more than doubled in value in the past year. Scott said that compares with an average gain of 71 percent for U.S. independent power producers.
The company has said Joel Staff will retire as chief executive officer this year and will be replaced by Chief Financial Officer Mark Jacobs.
Reliant is the second-largest power retailer in Texas, ranking behind Dallas-based TXU Corp.
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