Shares of Chesapeake Utilities Corp. (NYSE:CPK) have earned a consensus recommendation of “Hold” from the six analysts that are covering the company. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and two have given a buy recommendation to the company. The average 1-year price objective among brokers that have covered the stock in the last year is $71.50.

Several research firms have recently commented on CPK. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Chesapeake Utilities Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $73.00 price target for the company in a research note on Tuesday, July 19th. Janney Montgomery Scott upgraded Chesapeake Utilities Corp. from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $59.00 to $71.00 in a research note on Monday, August 8th.

Shares of Chesapeake Utilities Corp. (NYSE:CPK) opened at 62.60 on Monday. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $61.25 and its 200 day moving average is $62.13. Chesapeake Utilities Corp. has a 52 week low of $50.61 and a 52 week high of $67.88. The firm has a market cap of $1.02 billion, a PE ratio of 23.17 and a beta of 0.19.

Chesapeake Utilities Corp. (NYSE:CPK) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 3rd. The company reported $0.29 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.11. Chesapeake Utilities Corp. had a return on equity of 11.34% and a net margin of 8.98%. The company had revenue of $108.35 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $100.70 million. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.33 EPS. Chesapeake Utilities Corp.’s revenue for the quarter was up 17.5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts forecast that Chesapeake Utilities Corp. will post $2.87 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, January 5th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, December 15th will be given a $0.305 dividend. This represents a $1.22 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.95%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, December 13th. Chesapeake Utilities Corp.’s payout ratio is 45.19%.

In other Chesapeake Utilities Corp. news, insider John R. Schimkaitis sold 500 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, September 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.62, for a total value of $31,310.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. 5.36% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in CPK. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its position in Chesapeake Utilities Corp. by 1.5% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 498,901 shares of the company’s stock valued at $33,016,000 after buying an additional 7,278 shares during the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp boosted its position in Chesapeake Utilities Corp. by 7.6% in the second quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 446,259 shares of the company’s stock valued at $29,533,000 after buying an additional 31,665 shares during the last quarter. Energy Income Partners LLC boosted its position in Chesapeake Utilities Corp. by 87.4% in the first quarter. Energy Income Partners LLC now owns 431,779 shares of the company’s stock valued at $27,189,000 after buying an additional 201,414 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors boosted its position in Chesapeake Utilities Corp. by 7.0% in the third quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 377,999 shares of the company’s stock valued at $23,081,000 after buying an additional 24,582 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its position in Chesapeake Utilities Corp. by 1.5% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 262,450 shares of the company’s stock valued at $16,526,000 after buying an additional 3,950 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 53.72% of the company’s stock.

About Chesapeake Utilities Corp.

Chesapeake Utilities Corporation (Chesapeake) is an energy company. The Company, through its operating divisions and subsidiaries, is engaged in regulated and unregulated energy businesses. It provides natural gas distribution and transmission, natural gas supply, gathering and processing, electric distribution and propane distribution service.

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