White Lighthouse Investment Management Inc. lowered its position in shares of Southern Co (NYSE:SO) by 11.8% in the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 7,305 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 982 shares during the quarter. White Lighthouse Investment Management Inc.’s holdings in Southern were worth $378,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Webster Bank N. A. boosted its position in shares of Southern by 15.3% during the 1st quarter. Webster Bank N. A. now owns 1,509 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $78,000 after purchasing an additional 200 shares during the period. Home Federal Bank of Tennessee boosted its position in shares of Southern by 1.4% during the 1st quarter. Home Federal Bank of Tennessee now owns 14,242 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $736,000 after purchasing an additional 200 shares during the period. Resources Management Corp CT ADV boosted its position in shares of Southern by 1.8% during the 4th quarter. Resources Management Corp CT ADV now owns 11,261 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $494,000 after purchasing an additional 201 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. boosted its position in shares of Southern by 1.3% during the 1st quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 15,156 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $783,000 after purchasing an additional 201 shares during the period. Finally, Delta Asset Management LLC TN boosted its position in shares of Southern by 1.1% during the 4th quarter. Delta Asset Management LLC TN now owns 18,260 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $802,000 after purchasing an additional 205 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 56.59% of the company’s stock.
In related news, insider Ann P. Daiss sold 7,850 shares of Southern stock in a transaction on Monday, May 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.06, for a total transaction of $424,371.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 17,862 shares in the company, valued at approximately $965,619.72. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director Henry A. Clark III purchased 2,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, March 5th. The shares were bought at an average price of $50.19 per share, for a total transaction of $100,380.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now directly owns 2,000 shares in the company, valued at $100,380. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 267,249 shares of company stock worth $13,714,078 over the last quarter. 0.73% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Southern (NYSE:SO) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.70 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.70. Southern had a net margin of 15.03% and a return on equity of 10.37%. The business had revenue of $5.41 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.66 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.88 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 15.1% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, sell-side analysts forecast that Southern Co will post 3.03 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 6th. Investors of record on Monday, May 20th will be paid a dividend of $0.62 per share. This is a positive change from Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.60. This represents a $2.48 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.56%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, May 17th. Southern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 78.18%.
Several equities analysts have commented on the stock. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Southern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 7th. Evercore ISI raised shares of Southern from an “in-line” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, May 3rd. reissued a “sell” rating on shares of Southern in a research report on Wednesday, February 13th. ValuEngine raised shares of Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Saturday, March 9th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group set a $51.00 price target on shares of Southern and gave the company a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, April 22nd. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $48.23.
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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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