Shares of Southern Co. (NYSE:SO) have been assigned an average recommendation of “Hold” from the fourteen ratings firms that are currently covering the stock. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. The average 12-month price target among brokers that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $54.13.

A number of equities analysts recently issued reports on SO shares. Mizuho restated a “hold” rating and issued a $50.00 target price on shares of Southern in a report on Monday, July 11th. Jefferies Group restated a “hold” rating on shares of Southern in a report on Monday, July 11th. SunTrust Banks Inc. lifted their target price on Southern from $52.00 to $54.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Monday, September 26th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $60.00 target price on the stock in a report on Tuesday, September 27th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. restated a “neutral” rating and issued a $54.00 target price on shares of Southern in a report on Thursday, July 14th.

In other Southern news, EVP Christopher C. Womack sold 46,008 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.40, for a total value of $2,456,827.20. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 56,149 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,998,356.60. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, CEO Mark A. Crosswhite sold 167,273 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, July 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.30, for a total value of $8,915,650.90. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 171,983 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $9,166,693.90. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.00% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in SO. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in Southern by 5.6% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 60,379,260 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,238,139,000 after buying an additional 3,222,084 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp boosted its position in Southern by 1.9% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 46,544,013 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,496,153,000 after buying an additional 858,466 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. boosted its position in Southern by 3.0% in the second quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 25,650,940 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,375,660,000 after buying an additional 749,727 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors boosted its position in Southern by 13.0% in the second quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 19,032,403 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,020,708,000 after buying an additional 2,194,490 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp boosted its position in Southern by 0.5% in the second quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 10,577,864 shares of the company’s stock valued at $567,291,000 after buying an additional 57,511 shares in the last quarter. 48.64% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Southern (NYSE:SO) traded down 0.1902% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, reaching $49.6554. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 2,698,614 shares. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $51.60 and a 200-day moving average price of $51.39. The company has a market capitalization of $46.76 billion, a PE ratio of 19.7123 and a beta of 0.08. Southern has a 1-year low of $43.38 and a 1-year high of $54.64.

Southern (NYSE:SO) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, July 27th. The company reported $0.74 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.70 by $0.04. The firm had revenue of $4.45 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.54 billion. Southern had a return on equity of 12.50% and a net margin of 13.77%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.71 EPS. On average, equities analysts predict that Southern will post $2.86 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Southern Company Profile

The Southern Company (Southern Company) is a holding company. The Company owns all of the stock of the traditional operating companies and Southern Power Company (Southern Power), and owns other direct and indirect subsidiaries. Southern Company’s segments include the sale of electricity by four traditional operating companies, Southern Power and All Other.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:SO

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