Shares of NRG Energy Inc. NRG charged up 3.9% toward a one-year high in afternoon trading Wednesday, after Guggenheim turned bullish on the independent power producer the day before earnings are scheduled for release. Analyst Shahriar Pourreza raised his rating to buy, after being at neutral since March 2021, while bumping up his stock price target to $50 from $36. Pourreza said the upgrade was on the back of “increasing comfort” with the Smart Home business and on an improved view on several of “intangibles” that had kept him at neutral. “These include our impressions of not only management, which are much improved following recent meetings (both CEO and new CFO), but also Smart Home itself, where disclosures and time with the company have improved our understanding of the business,” Pourreza wrote. The company is slated to report third-quarter results before Thursday’s open, with the FactSet consensus for earnings per share at $2.55. The stock has fallen the day that the past three quarterly reports were released, by an average of 4.4%. The stock has rallied 16.4% over the past three months while the Utilities Select Sector ETF XLU has declined 8.8% and the S&P 500 SPX has shed 7.8%.

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