NiSource Inc. (NI) Short Interest Update

NiSource Inc. (NYSE:NI) was the recipient of a large decrease in short interest during the month of March. As of March 29th, there was short interest totalling 19,219,778 shares, a decrease of 15.0% from the March 15th total of 22,606,381 shares. Approximately 5.2% of the shares of the stock are sold short. Based on an average trading volume of 2,338,150 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 8.2 days.

Shares of NI opened at $27.98 on Tuesday. The firm has a market capitalization of $10.50 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.52, a P/E/G ratio of 3.54 and a beta of 0.28. NiSource has a 52-week low of $23.23 and a 52-week high of $28.85. The company has a quick ratio of 0.40, a current ratio of 0.51 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.46.

NiSource (NYSE:NI) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 20th. The utilities provider reported $0.38 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.36 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $1.46 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.40 billion. NiSource had a positive return on equity of 9.69% and a negative net margin of 0.99%. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.33 earnings per share. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that NiSource will post 1.3 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, May 20th. Investors of record on Tuesday, April 30th will be given a $0.20 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, April 29th. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.86%. NiSource’s dividend payout ratio is presently 61.54%.

NI has been the subject of a number of research reports. KeyCorp increased their target price on NiSource from $28.00 to $29.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Monday, December 17th. Zacks Investment Research reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of NiSource in a research report on Monday, December 31st. ValuEngine upgraded NiSource from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, March 1st. Guggenheim upgraded NiSource from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, January 7th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group upgraded NiSource from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their target price for the company from $26.00 to $29.00 in a research report on Monday, April 8th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the stock. NiSource presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $27.85.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased its stake in NiSource by 34.7% in the third quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 12,869,201 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $320,701,000 after purchasing an additional 3,317,125 shares during the period. Norges Bank purchased a new stake in NiSource in the fourth quarter worth $47,499,000. FMR LLC increased its stake in NiSource by 104.5% in the fourth quarter. FMR LLC now owns 3,036,242 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $76,968,000 after purchasing an additional 1,551,419 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in NiSource by 3.9% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 39,886,268 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $993,966,000 after purchasing an additional 1,483,703 shares during the period. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc increased its stake in NiSource by 3.9% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 39,886,268 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $993,966,000 after purchasing an additional 1,483,703 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 93.43% of the company’s stock.

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About NiSource

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 for residential, commercial, and industrial customers; generates, transmits, and distributes electricity; and wholesale and transmission transaction services.

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