Southern (SO) Rating Increased to Hold at ValuEngine

Southern (NYSE:SO) was upgraded by ValuEngine from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Friday.

SO has been the subject of several other reports. Zacks Investment Research raised Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $49.00 target price for the company in a research report on Tuesday, October 9th. Bank of America raised Southern from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $46.00 target price for the company in a research report on Wednesday, October 10th. Morgan Stanley raised their target price on Southern from $42.00 to $45.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a research report on Monday, July 16th. Howard Weil started coverage on Southern in a research report on Tuesday, July 24th. They set a “sector perform” rating and a $45.00 target price for the company. Finally, Citigroup lowered Southern from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $45.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Wednesday, August 8th. Six analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $46.04.

Shares of Southern stock traded up $0.77 during trading hours on Friday, hitting $45.07. 6,466,500 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 6,223,890. Southern has a 12-month low of $42.38 and a 12-month high of $53.51. The firm has a market cap of $44.94 billion, a PE ratio of 14.92, a P/E/G ratio of 3.29 and a beta of -0.05. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.59, a current ratio of 0.81 and a quick ratio of 0.68.

Southern (NYSE:SO) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, August 8th. The utilities provider reported $0.80 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.69 by $0.11. Southern had a return on equity of 13.06% and a net margin of 9.96%. The firm had revenue of $5.63 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.28 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.73 EPS. The business’s revenue was up 3.6% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities analysts anticipate that Southern will post 3 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In related news, EVP Christopher C. Womack sold 16,371 shares of Southern stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.40, for a total value of $775,985.40. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 10,165 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $481,821. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Company insiders own 0.73% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in SO. Ipswich Investment Management Co. Inc. boosted its position in shares of Southern by 5.4% during the 2nd quarter. Ipswich Investment Management Co. Inc. now owns 21,309 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $987,000 after acquiring an additional 1,090 shares during the last quarter. Moloney Securities Asset Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Southern by 17.1% during the 2nd quarter. Moloney Securities Asset Management LLC now owns 7,474 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $346,000 after acquiring an additional 1,093 shares during the last quarter. Andra AP fonden boosted its position in shares of Southern by 2.1% during the 2nd quarter. Andra AP fonden now owns 52,500 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $2,431,000 after acquiring an additional 1,100 shares during the last quarter. BB&T Corp boosted its position in shares of Southern by 0.7% during the 2nd quarter. BB&T Corp now owns 157,644 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $7,301,000 after acquiring an additional 1,138 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Quadrant Capital Group LLC boosted its position in shares of Southern by 22.6% during the 2nd quarter. Quadrant Capital Group LLC now owns 6,587 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $293,000 after acquiring an additional 1,214 shares during the last quarter. 57.34% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Southern

The Southern Company, through its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity. The company also constructs, acquires, owns, and manages power generation assets, including renewable energy facilities and sells electricity in the wholesale market; and distributes natural gas in Illinois, Georgia, Virginia, New Jersey, Florida, Tennessee, and Maryland, as well as provides gas marketing services, wholesale gas services, and gas midstream operations.

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Analyst Recommendations for Southern (NYSE:SO)

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