Centre Asset Management LLC lowered its stake in Southern Co (NYSE:SO) by 12.7% during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 13,039 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 1,890 shares during the quarter. Centre Asset Management LLC’s holdings in Southern were worth $831,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of the business. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its position in shares of Southern by 3.4% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 88,169,680 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $4,874,020,000 after purchasing an additional 2,923,497 shares in the last quarter. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. lifted its position in shares of Southern by 449.2% during the second quarter. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. now owns 3,322,449 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $183,665,000 after purchasing an additional 2,717,467 shares in the last quarter. Zimmer Partners LP lifted its position in shares of Southern by 126.5% during the third quarter. Zimmer Partners LP now owns 2,704,340 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $167,047,000 after purchasing an additional 1,510,340 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its position in shares of Southern by 2.2% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 70,040,340 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $3,871,830,000 after purchasing an additional 1,479,813 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Invesco Ltd. lifted its position in shares of Southern by 22.4% during the second quarter. Invesco Ltd. now owns 7,200,728 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $398,057,000 after purchasing an additional 1,319,096 shares in the last quarter. 58.97% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Several analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. SunTrust Banks increased their price target on shares of Southern from $60.00 to $63.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 18th. Evercore ISI reissued a “hold” rating and set a $63.50 price target on shares of Southern in a research report on Sunday, December 15th. Credit Suisse Group increased their price target on shares of Southern from $60.00 to $64.00 and gave the stock an “underperform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 18th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their target price on shares of Southern from $63.00 to $64.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, December 18th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and ten have issued a hold rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $59.77.
In other Southern news, CFO Stan W. Connally sold 4,755 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $16.76, for a total value of $79,693.80. Also, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 2,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.22, for a total transaction of $124,440.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 65,772 shares in the company, valued at $4,092,333.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 2,157,220 shares of company stock worth $135,771,433 over the last quarter. 0.88% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
Shares of SO stock traded up $0.38 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $64.92. 5,153,316 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 3,995,002. The business’s fifty day moving average is $62.63 and its two-hundred day moving average is $60.06. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.37, a current ratio of 0.94 and a quick ratio of 0.77. Southern Co has a 12-month low of $46.07 and a 12-month high of $64.92. The firm has a market capitalization of $66.76 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.15, a P/E/G ratio of 4.45 and a beta of 0.15.
Southern (NYSE:SO) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, October 30th. The utilities provider reported $1.34 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.14 by $0.20. Southern had a net margin of 21.02% and a return on equity of 10.52%. The firm had revenue of $6 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $6.01 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.14 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 2.7% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities research analysts predict that Southern Co will post 3.09 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Southern Company Profile
The Southern Company, through its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity. It operates in four segments: Gas Distribution Operations, Gas Pipeline Investments, Wholesale Gas Services, and Gas Marketing Services. 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, and Tennessee, as well as provides gas marketing services, wholesale gas services, and gas pipeline investments operations.
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