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Here's How Much Investing $100 In PG&E Stock Back In 2010 Would Be Worth Today

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Here's How Much Investing $100 In PG&E Stock Back In 2010 Would Be Worth Today

Investors who owned stocks in the 2010s generally experienced some big gains. In fact, the SPDR S&P 500 (NYSE: SPY) total return for the decade was 250.5%. But there’s no question some big-name stocks did much better than others along the way.

PG&E’s’ Difficult Decade

One of the market laggards of the decade was California utility giant PG&E Corporation (NYSE: PCG).

PG&E investors started the 2000s with a 2001 bankruptcy due a California energy crisis. Investors hoping to get through the 2010s without another bankruptcy didn’t quite get what they had hoped for.

In May 2018, California state officials ruled PG&E violated state law and the company’s equipment was responsible for three 2017 wildfires and up to $12 billion in damages. From that point forward, PG&E was repeatedly implicated in a series of additional wildfires. As a result, PG&E officially filed for bankruptcy on Jan. 29, 2019. Despite the filing, the common stock continues to trade on hopes that the ultimate bankruptcy settlement will preserve a certain amount of shareholder equity.

PG&E shares started the 2010s trading at around $44. For most of the decade, the stock marched steadily higher with little volatility, as utility stocks often do. PG&E reached its decade high price of $71.57 in mid-2017, just as the first of the wildfires started to ravage California.

By late 2019, PG&E shares had hit their low point of the decade, dropping all the way down to $3.55 on fears that a wildfire-driven bankruptcy would potentially wipe out all shareholder equity. Since that time, the stock has rebounded to around $9 on hopes that the company’s wildfire liability won’t ultimately be as bad as some had feared.

2020 And Beyond

Despite the recent optimism, there’s no question PG&E was a disastrous investment in the 2010s.

In fact, $100 worth of PG&E stock in 2010 would be worth $28 today, assuming reinvested dividends.

Looking ahead, analysts expect PG&E will bounce back in 2020. The average price target among the nine analysts covering the stock is $15 suggesting 70.6% upside from current levels.

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Photo credit: Frank Deanrdo, Flickr

 

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