NorthWestern Corp. (NWE) Rating Lowered to Sell at Zacks Investment Research
NorthWestern Corp. (NYSE:NWE) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report issued on Wednesday.
According to Zacks, “Northwestern Corporation d/b/a NorthWestern Energy is an investor-owned utility and one of the largest providers of electricity and natural gas in the northwest quadrant of the United States. NorthWestern was incorporated in Delaware in November 1923, and since has generated and distributed electricity in South Dakota and distributed natural gas in South Dakota and Nebraska through their energy division, NorthWestern Energy. “
Shares of NorthWestern Corp. (NYSE:NWE) opened at 55.03 on Wednesday. NorthWestern Corp. has a 12-month low of $51.27 and a 12-month high of $63.75. The firm has a market capitalization of $2.66 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.64 and a beta of 0.39. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $58.30 and a 200-day moving average of $59.47.
NorthWestern Corp. (NYSE:NWE) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 22nd. The company reported $0.65 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.53 by $0.12. NorthWestern Corp. had a return on equity of 9.56% and a net margin of 11.64%. The company earned $293.10 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $320.68 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.64 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 8.3% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts predict that NorthWestern Corp. will post $3.27 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 30th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, September 15th were paid a $0.50 dividend. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.63%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, September 13th. NorthWestern Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 67.80%.
In other NorthWestern Corp. news, VP Curtis T. Pohl sold 2,650 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, July 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $60.48, for a total transaction of $160,272.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, CFO Brian B. Bird sold 9,320 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $60.95, for a total transaction of $568,054.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.34% of the stock is owned by insiders.
A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in NWE. Aperio Group LLC increased its stake in NorthWestern Corp. by 18.6% in the first quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 18,834 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,163,000 after buying an additional 2,950 shares in the last quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. increased its stake in NorthWestern Corp. by 23.0% in the first quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. now owns 6,984 shares of the company’s stock worth $431,000 after buying an additional 1,305 shares in the last quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. increased its stake in NorthWestern Corp. by 11.6% in the first quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 125,139 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,728,000 after buying an additional 13,028 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in NorthWestern Corp. by 24.8% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 56,113 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,465,000 after buying an additional 11,149 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Group LTD increased its stake in NorthWestern Corp. by 9.3% in the first quarter. BlackRock Group LTD now owns 138,934 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,579,000 after buying an additional 11,809 shares in the last quarter. 99.14% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
NorthWestern Corp. Company Profile
NorthWestern Corporation, doing business as North-Western Energy, provides electricity and natural gas. The Company provides electricity and natural gas to over 701,000 customers in Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska. It generates and distributes electricity in South Dakota; distributes natural gas in South Dakota and Nebraska, and generates and distributes electricity and distributed natural gas in Montana.
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