NiSource Inc. (NI) Given Consensus Rating of “Buy” by Brokerages

Shares of NiSource Inc. (NYSE:NI) have been assigned an average recommendation of “Buy” from the thirteen brokerages that are currently covering the stock, Marketbeat.com reports. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. The average 12-month price objective among brokerages that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $26.50.

NI has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lifted their target price on shares of NiSource from $23.00 to $25.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 10th. Bank of America upgraded shares of NiSource from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, March 23rd. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of NiSource from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, April 11th. Credit Suisse Group lifted their price target on shares of NiSource to $27.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, May 7th. Finally, Citigroup lowered shares of NiSource from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and dropped their price target for the company from $31.00 to $25.00 in a research report on Tuesday, March 27th.

In related news, VP Peter T. Disser sold 6,732 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $24.67, for a total transaction of $166,078.44. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 7,695 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $189,835.65. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, EVP Pablo Vegas bought 14,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 25th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $25.02 per share, for a total transaction of $362,790.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 44,049 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,102,105.98. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Company insiders own 0.37% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Brown Advisory Inc. bought a new position in NiSource during the first quarter worth $280,000. CIBC World Markets Inc. bought a new position in NiSource during the first quarter worth $1,086,000. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB increased its position in NiSource by 23.0% during the first quarter. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB now owns 35,748 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $855,000 after acquiring an additional 6,678 shares during the period. Legal & General Group Plc increased its position in NiSource by 9.1% during the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 2,967,466 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $70,950,000 after acquiring an additional 248,000 shares during the period. Finally, Tortoise Capital Advisors L.L.C. increased its position in NiSource by 15.6% during the first quarter. Tortoise Capital Advisors L.L.C. now owns 1,594,419 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $38,123,000 after acquiring an additional 214,874 shares during the period. 89.15% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

NiSource opened at $26.12 on Friday, according to Marketbeat.com. The company has a quick ratio of 0.43, a current ratio of 0.51 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.62. The company has a market capitalization of $8.72 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.59, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.65 and a beta of 0.28. NiSource has a 12-month low of $22.44 and a 12-month high of $27.76.

NiSource (NYSE:NI) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, May 2nd. The utilities provider reported $0.77 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.76 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $1.75 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.66 billion. NiSource had a net margin of 3.85% and a return on equity of 9.85%. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.71 earnings per share. analysts anticipate that NiSource will post 1.29 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, August 20th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, July 31st will be given a $0.195 dividend. This represents a $0.78 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.99%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, July 30th. NiSource’s dividend payout ratio is 64.46%.

NiSource Company Profile

NiSource Inc, an energy holding company, operates as a regulated natural gas and electric utility company in the United States. The company operates in two segments, Gas Distribution Operations and Electric Operations. It provides natural gas service and transportation to residential, commercial, and industrial customers; generates, transmits, and distributes electricity; and offers wholesale and transmission transaction services.

Analyst Recommendations for NiSource (NYSE:NI)

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