ProVise Management Group LLC Reduces Holdings in The Southern Company (NYSE:SO)

ProVise Management Group LLC cut its stake in The Southern Company (NYSE:SOFree Report) by 6.0% in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 9,983 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 636 shares during the period. ProVise Management Group LLC’s holdings in Southern were worth $700,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

A number of other large investors have also recently made changes to their positions in SO. BKM Wealth Management LLC acquired a new stake in Southern during the 4th quarter worth about $34,000. Valley National Advisers Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Southern by 63.9% during the fourth quarter. Valley National Advisers Inc. now owns 526 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $36,000 after purchasing an additional 205 shares during the period. Cassady Schiller Wealth Management LLC boosted its position in Southern by 46.3% in the fourth quarter. Cassady Schiller Wealth Management LLC now owns 556 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $39,000 after buying an additional 176 shares during the last quarter. Atticus Wealth Management LLC increased its holdings in Southern by 30.4% in the 3rd quarter. Atticus Wealth Management LLC now owns 652 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $42,000 after buying an additional 152 shares during the period. Finally, Larson Financial Group LLC lifted its stake in Southern by 62.5% during the 3rd quarter. Larson Financial Group LLC now owns 689 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $45,000 after acquiring an additional 265 shares during the period. 64.10% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

SO has been the topic of a number of research reports. Barclays increased their price objective on shares of Southern from $65.00 to $66.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Monday, April 15th. BMO Capital Markets reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $76.00 price objective (up previously from $72.00) on shares of Southern in a research note on Monday, April 1st. Argus upped their target price on Southern from $75.00 to $90.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 15th. Scotiabank reduced their price target on Southern from $80.00 to $77.00 and set a “sector outperform” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, April 22nd. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company upped their price objective on Southern from $72.00 to $77.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Friday, May 3rd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating, seven have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, Southern presently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $75.73.

Get Our Latest Stock Analysis on SO

Insider Transactions at Southern

In other news, CEO Kimberly S. Greene sold 9,126 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $75.04, for a total value of $684,815.04. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 121,504 shares in the company, valued at $9,117,660.16. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. In other news, CEO Kimberly S. Greene sold 9,126 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $75.04, for a total transaction of $684,815.04. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 121,504 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $9,117,660.16. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 5,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, March 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $68.92, for a total transaction of $344,600.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 126,528 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $8,720,309.76. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.18% of the company’s stock.

Southern Price Performance

Shares of SO traded up $0.58 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $77.75. 2,424,732 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 5,115,094. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.67, a quick ratio of 0.65 and a current ratio of 0.92. The Southern Company has a 1-year low of $61.56 and a 1-year high of $80.14. The stock has a market cap of $85.11 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.09, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.19 and a beta of 0.48. The company has a 50 day moving average of $73.40 and a 200-day moving average of $70.78.

Southern (NYSE:SOGet Free Report) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, May 2nd. The utilities provider reported $1.03 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.90 by $0.13. Southern had a return on equity of 12.07% and a net margin of 16.74%. The business had revenue of $6.65 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.59 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.79 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 2.6% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that The Southern Company will post 3.99 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Southern Increases Dividend

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 6th. Stockholders of record on Monday, May 20th will be issued a dividend of $0.72 per share. This is a positive change from Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.70. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, May 17th. This represents a $2.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.70%. Southern’s dividend payout ratio is presently 74.42%.

About Southern

(Free Report)

The Southern Company, through its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity. The company also develops, constructs, acquires, owns, and manages power generation assets, including renewable energy projects and sells electricity in the wholesale market; and distributes natural gas in Illinois, Georgia, Virginia, and Tennessee, as well as provides gas marketing services, gas distribution operations, and gas pipeline investments operations.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Southern (NYSE:SO)

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