Southwest Gas (SWX) Rating Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Southwest Gas (NYSE:SWX) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Friday.

According to Zacks, “Southwest Gas Holdings, Inc. is an energy holding company based in Las Vegas, Nevada. Southwest Gas Holdings, Inc. owns two primary operating companies, Southwest Gas Corporation and Centuri Construction Group, Inc. Southwest Gas Corporation is a regulated utility and provides natural gas service to more than 1.9 million residential, commercial, and industrial customers in most of Arizona and Nevada, and parts of northeastern and southeastern California. Centuri Construction Group, Inc., is a full-service underground piping contractor that primarily provides utility companies with trenching and installation, replacement, and maintenance services for energy distribution systems, and develops industrial construction solutions. Centuri Construction Group Inc. operates in major markets across the United States and Canada. “

Several other brokerages have also recently commented on SWX. Citigroup raised their target price on Southwest Gas from $79.00 to $82.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Monday, November 20th. UBS Group raised their target price on Southwest Gas from $83.00 to $85.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 8th. KeyCorp reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Southwest Gas in a research report on Friday, October 20th. Finally, Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $70.00 target price on shares of Southwest Gas in a research report on Monday, October 16th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $83.00.

Southwest Gas (NYSE SWX) opened at $75.75 on Friday. The company has a market capitalization of $3,615.70, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.28, a P/E/G ratio of 3.57 and a beta of 0.61. Southwest Gas has a 12-month low of $72.32 and a 12-month high of $86.87. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.01, a current ratio of 0.82 and a quick ratio of 0.82.

Southwest Gas (NYSE:SWX) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, November 7th. The utilities provider reported $0.21 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.14 by $0.07. The firm had revenue of $593.15 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $579.40 million. Southwest Gas had a return on equity of 9.56% and a net margin of 6.64%. Southwest Gas’s quarterly revenue was up 9.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.05 earnings per share. analysts predict that Southwest Gas will post 3.38 EPS for the current year.

In other Southwest Gas news, SVP Eric Debonis sold 3,520 shares of Southwest Gas stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $82.18, for a total transaction of $289,273.60. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 16,060 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,319,810.80. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, VP Kenneth J. Kenny sold 600 shares of Southwest Gas stock in a transaction on Monday, November 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.17, for a total value of $48,102.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 16,746 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,342,526.82. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 5,120 shares of company stock valued at $423,096. Company insiders own 0.99% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank lifted its holdings in shares of Southwest Gas by 7.3% during the second quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 1,725 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $126,000 after acquiring an additional 118 shares during the period. Flinton Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Southwest Gas by 69.7% during the second quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 2,416 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $177,000 after acquiring an additional 992 shares during the period. Ashfield Capital Partners LLC bought a new position in shares of Southwest Gas during the third quarter valued at $212,000. Riverhead Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Southwest Gas by 74.8% in the second quarter. Riverhead Capital Management LLC now owns 2,797 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $204,000 after buying an additional 1,197 shares in the last quarter. Finally, CIBC Asset Management Inc acquired a new stake in shares of Southwest Gas in the third quarter valued at $238,000. 77.41% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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Southwest Gas Company Profile

Southwest Gas Holdings, Inc, formerly Southwest Gas Corporation, is engaged in the business of purchasing, distributing and transporting natural gas. The Company operates through two segments: natural gas operations and construction services, which includes the operations of the Company’s subsidiary, Centuri Construction Group, Inc (Centuri).

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