Unitil Co. (NYSE:UTL) Rating Increased to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Unitil Co. (NYSE:UTL) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday, November 1st. The firm currently has a $58.00 price target on the utilities provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective points to a potential upside of 16.09% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Unitil Corporation is a registered public utility holding company and the parent company of the Unitil System. “

Several other equities research analysts also recently weighed in on UTL. Royal Bank Of Canada reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $47.00 price target on shares of Unitil in a report on Wednesday, October 18th. BidaskClub raised Unitil from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, August 10th.

Unitil (NYSE UTL) traded up $0.34 on Wednesday, hitting $49.96. 55,324 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 38,881. Unitil has a 1 year low of $42.36 and a 1 year high of $52.84. The firm has a market cap of $700.68, a PE ratio of 24.81 and a beta of 0.21. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.04, a quick ratio of 0.53 and a current ratio of 0.56.

Unitil (NYSE:UTL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The utilities provider reported $0.16 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.12 by $0.04. Unitil had a net margin of 2.74% and a return on equity of 3.08%. The firm had revenue of $475.20 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $82.80 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.25 EPS. The company’s revenue was down 3.4% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts forecast that Unitil will post 2.03 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC increased its holdings in shares of Unitil by 1.8% in the 3rd quarter. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC now owns 951,407 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $47,057,000 after acquiring an additional 16,392 shares during the last quarter. Eagle Boston Investment Management Inc. grew its stake in Unitil by 6.0% during the 2nd quarter. Eagle Boston Investment Management Inc. now owns 100,178 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $4,839,000 after buying an additional 5,670 shares during the last quarter. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. grew its stake in Unitil by 47.0% during the 2nd quarter. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. now owns 11,344 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $548,000 after buying an additional 3,626 shares during the last quarter. Swiss National Bank grew its stake in Unitil by 5.3% during the 1st quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 22,000 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $991,000 after buying an additional 1,100 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Strs Ohio grew its stake in shares of Unitil by 54.0% in the third quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 9,700 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $479,000 after purchasing an additional 3,400 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 59.79% of the company’s stock.

Unitil Company Profile

Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company. The Company’s principal business is the local distribution of electricity in the southeastern seacoast and state capital regions of New Hampshire and the greater Fitchburg area of north central Massachusetts and the local distribution of natural gas in southeastern New Hampshire, portions of southern Maine to the Lewiston-Auburn area and in the greater Fitchburg area of north central Massachusetts.

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