Folger Nolan Fleming Douglas Capital Management Inc. Has $7.89 Million Position in Essential Utilities, Inc. (NYSE:WTRG)

Folger Nolan Fleming Douglas Capital Management Inc. lowered its holdings in Essential Utilities, Inc. (NYSE:WTRGGet Rating) by 2.8% in the 2nd quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 171,966 shares of the company’s stock after selling 4,897 shares during the quarter. Essential Utilities comprises approximately 1.0% of Folger Nolan Fleming Douglas Capital Management Inc.’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 28th largest holding. Folger Nolan Fleming Douglas Capital Management Inc. owned about 0.07% of Essential Utilities worth $7,885,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other hedge funds have also bought and sold shares of the business. Hazlett Burt & Watson Inc. purchased a new position in Essential Utilities during the 1st quarter worth $25,000. Selective Wealth Management Inc. purchased a new position in Essential Utilities during the 1st quarter worth $36,000. MCF Advisors LLC purchased a new position in Essential Utilities during the 1st quarter worth $38,000. 1832 Asset Management L.P. bought a new stake in shares of Essential Utilities during the 1st quarter worth $38,000. Finally, Herold Advisors Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Essential Utilities during the 1st quarter worth $41,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 69.79% of the company’s stock.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

A number of equities research analysts have recently commented on the company. Barclays lowered their target price on Essential Utilities from $54.00 to $51.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a research note on Monday, July 18th. Northcoast Research assumed coverage on Essential Utilities in a research note on Monday, July 18th. They set a “buy” rating on the stock. HSBC upgraded Essential Utilities from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their target price for the stock from $53.00 to $57.00 in a research note on Thursday, August 18th. Robert W. Baird lifted their target price on Essential Utilities from $50.00 to $54.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, August 5th. Finally, Bank of America cut Essential Utilities from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $52.00 price objective on the stock. in a research note on Friday, September 9th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company. According to data from MarketBeat.com, Essential Utilities currently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $53.33.

Essential Utilities Stock Performance

Essential Utilities stock traded down $1.03 during midday trading on Friday, reaching $44.03. The stock had a trading volume of 24,461 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,198,222. Essential Utilities, Inc. has a 12 month low of $40.97 and a 12 month high of $53.93. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $49.46 and its 200 day moving average price is $47.77. The firm has a market capitalization of $11.54 billion, a PE ratio of 26.15, a P/E/G ratio of 4.15 and a beta of 0.71. The company has a quick ratio of 0.52, a current ratio of 0.76 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.14.

Essential Utilities (NYSE:WTRGGet Rating) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.31 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.31. Essential Utilities had a return on equity of 8.58% and a net margin of 21.93%. The firm had revenue of $448.76 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $413.00 million. As a group, research analysts predict that Essential Utilities, Inc. will post 1.78 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Essential Utilities Increases Dividend

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 1st. Stockholders of record on Friday, August 12th were given a dividend of $0.287 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, August 11th. This is a boost from Essential Utilities’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.27. This represents a $1.15 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.61%. Essential Utilities’s dividend payout ratio is currently 67.65%.

Essential Utilities Profile

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Essential Utilities, Inc, through its subsidiaries, operates regulated utilities that provide water, wastewater, or natural gas services in the United States. It offers water services through operating and maintenance contract with municipal authorities and other parties. The company also provides non-utility raw water supply services for firms in the natural gas drilling industry; and water and sewer line protection solutions, and repair services to households through a third-party.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Essential Utilities (NYSE:WTRG)

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