Livforsakringsbolaget Skandia Omsesidigt lifted its position in shares of Southern Co (NYSE:SO) by 5.5% in the first quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The fund owned 21,176 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after buying an additional 1,100 shares during the period. Livforsakringsbolaget Skandia Omsesidigt’s holdings in Southern were worth $1,095,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Several other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of SO. Morgan Stanley increased its position in Southern by 17.3% during the third quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 5,781,699 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $252,083,000 after buying an additional 852,234 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc increased its position in Southern by 1.7% during the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 77,467,557 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $3,377,586,000 after buying an additional 1,324,658 shares in the last quarter. Strs Ohio increased its position in Southern by 2.5% during the fourth quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 556,128 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $24,425,000 after buying an additional 13,628 shares in the last quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. increased its position in Southern by 20.2% during the fourth quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. now owns 114,399 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $5,024,000 after buying an additional 19,202 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Mondrian Investment Partners LTD purchased a new position in Southern during the fourth quarter worth $40,000. 56.69% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
Several equities analysts have weighed in on the company. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Southern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday. ValuEngine raised Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, May 10th. Evercore ISI raised Southern from an “in-line” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, May 3rd. Credit Suisse Group set a $51.00 price target on Southern and gave the stock a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, April 22nd. Finally, SunTrust Banks reissued a “hold” rating and set a $52.00 price target on shares of Southern in a research report on Monday, February 25th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $48.23.
Southern (NYSE:SO) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.70 EPS for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.70. The business had revenue of $5.41 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.66 billion. Southern had a return on equity of 10.37% and a net margin of 15.03%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 15.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.88 earnings per share. Sell-side analysts expect that Southern Co will post 3.03 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 6th. Stockholders of record on Monday, May 20th will be given a $0.62 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, May 17th. This represents a $2.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.56%. This is an increase from Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.60. Southern’s payout ratio is currently 80.78%.
In other news, insider Ann P. Daiss sold 3,786 shares of Southern stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $54.42, for a total value of $206,034.12. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 13,798 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $750,887.16. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Henry A. Clark III acquired 2,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, March 5th. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $50.19 per share, with a total value of $100,380.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 2,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $100,380. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 271,035 shares of company stock valued at $13,920,112. Company insiders own 0.73% of the company’s stock.
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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