Zacks: Brokerages Expect Atmos Energy Co. (ATO) Will Post Earnings of $0.72 Per Share

Brokerages predict that Atmos Energy Co. (NYSE:ATO) will post $0.72 earnings per share (EPS) for the current quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Two analysts have made estimates for Atmos Energy’s earnings. The lowest EPS estimate is $0.66 and the highest is $0.77. Atmos Energy posted earnings of $0.64 per share during the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year-over-year growth rate of 12.5%. The company is scheduled to issue its next quarterly earnings report on Wednesday, August 14th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Atmos Energy will report full-year earnings of $4.32 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $4.28 to $4.39. For the next fiscal year, analysts forecast that the company will post earnings of $4.61 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $4.57 to $4.65. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share averages are a mean average based on a survey of research firms that follow Atmos Energy.

Atmos Energy (NYSE:ATO) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, May 7th. The utilities provider reported $1.82 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.68 by $0.14. Atmos Energy had a return on equity of 9.60% and a net margin of 16.19%. The firm had revenue of $1.09 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.29 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.57 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was down 10.2% on a year-over-year basis.

Separately, Zacks Investment Research raised Atmos Energy from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $113.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Tuesday, April 9th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $102.00.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in ATO. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund boosted its stake in shares of Atmos Energy by 9,596.8% during the 4th quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 4,233,224 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $46,000 after acquiring an additional 4,189,568 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in shares of Atmos Energy by 20.0% during the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 13,525,109 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,254,048,000 after purchasing an additional 2,251,627 shares during the last quarter. FMR LLC raised its position in shares of Atmos Energy by 68.7% during the 4th quarter. FMR LLC now owns 3,369,172 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $312,389,000 after purchasing an additional 1,371,891 shares during the last quarter. GQG Partners LLC acquired a new position in shares of Atmos Energy during the 4th quarter worth approximately $79,554,000. Finally, Ronna Sue Cohen raised its position in shares of Atmos Energy by 10,247.3% during the 1st quarter. Ronna Sue Cohen now owns 752,350 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $752,000 after purchasing an additional 745,079 shares during the last quarter. 76.52% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Shares of NYSE ATO traded down $0.02 during midday trading on Friday, reaching $102.81. 664,220 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,117,938. Atmos Energy has a 1 year low of $84.35 and a 1 year high of $104.07. The firm has a market cap of $12.03 billion, a P/E ratio of 25.70, a P/E/G ratio of 3.63 and a beta of 0.25. The company has a quick ratio of 0.69, a current ratio of 0.78 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.64.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 10th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, May 28th will be issued a $0.525 dividend. This represents a $2.10 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.04%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, May 24th. Atmos Energy’s dividend payout ratio is presently 52.50%.

Atmos Energy Company Profile

Atmos Energy Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the regulated natural gas distribution, and pipeline and storage businesses in the United States. It operates through Distribution, and Pipeline and Storage segments. The Distribution segment is involved in the regulated natural gas distribution and related sales operations in eight states.

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