February 8, 2018 / 4:49 PM / in 8 months

BUZZ-Just Energy Group: Stock set for best day ever

** U.S.-listed shares of retail energy provider up ~14 pct at $4.60, touches highest level in over 3-months

** Stock third biggest pct gainer on NYSE and if current gains hold, is set for best day ever

** CIBC raises to “outperform” from “neutral” and Canaccord Genuity upgrades to “buy” from “hold” and National Bank of Canada to “outperform” from “sector perform”

** Company posts 1 pct decline in quarterly sales vs 9 pct drop in year-ago quarter; base EBITDA rose 2 pct compared with last year’s fall of 8 pct

** JE’s base funds from operations (FFO) rises 79 pct to $37.5 mln, compared with 22 pct drop last year’s quarter, driven by cost-savings and current income tax reduction

** CIBC sees a compelling risk/reward with its share price down ~41 pct since May last year, says JE’s ~10 pct dividend yield is compelling and payout is safe

** Company on track to expand into 500 retail stores by year-end; its loyalty program is also reducing attrition - CIBC

** Stock fell 21 pct last, has risen 7 pct in 2018 including session gains (Reporting by Medha Singh in Bengaluru)

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