Security National Bank acquired a new stake in shares of The Southern Company (NYSE:SO) during the first quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The fund acquired 5,700 shares of the utilities provider’s stock, valued at approximately $354,000.
Several other hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of SO. Wealth Alliance lifted its position in shares of The Southern by 8.4% during the 3rd quarter. Wealth Alliance now owns 11,677 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $633,000 after buying an additional 907 shares in the last quarter. Earnest Partners LLC lifted its position in shares of The Southern by 6.7% during the 3rd quarter. Earnest Partners LLC now owns 75,620 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $4,100,000 after buying an additional 4,758 shares in the last quarter. Point72 Hong Kong Ltd purchased a new position in shares of The Southern during the 3rd quarter valued at about $346,000. Te Ahumairangi Investment Management Ltd bought a new position in shares of The Southern in the third quarter worth about $9,188,000. Finally, Fortis Group Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of The Southern during the third quarter worth about $868,000. 57.62% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
In related news, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 2,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.00, for a total transaction of $152,500.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 66,127 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,033,747. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, insider Ann P. Daiss sold 5,549 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.75, for a total value of $348,199.75. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 18,666 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,171,291.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 13,049 shares of company stock valued at $802,200 over the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 0.39% of the company’s stock.
The Southern (NYSE:SO) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, February 17th. The utilities provider reported $0.47 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.42 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $5.12 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.07 billion. The Southern had a return on equity of 10.08% and a net margin of 15.80%. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.27 EPS. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that The Southern Company will post 3.19 earnings per share for the current year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, March 8th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, February 16th were paid a $0.64 dividend. This represents a $2.56 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.07%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, February 12th. The Southern’s payout ratio is 82.32%.
Several research firms recently issued reports on SO. Zacks Investment Research upgraded The Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $63.00 target price for the company in a research report on Thursday, January 14th. Mizuho increased their target price on The Southern from $52.00 to $57.00 and gave the stock an “underperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 18th. Bank of America upgraded The Southern from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $64.00 target price for the company in a research report on Tuesday, January 19th. Wells Fargo & Company increased their target price on The Southern from $67.00 to $71.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, March 31st. Finally, KeyCorp cut their price target on The Southern from $66.00 to $65.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a report on Tuesday, January 12th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $64.60.
About The Southern
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 and battery energy storage 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, wholesale gas services, and gas pipeline investments operations.
Further Reading: Outstanding Shares and The Effect on Share Price
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