Shares of Aqua America Inc. (NYSE:WTR) have been assigned an average recommendation of “Hold” from the nine analysts that are covering the company. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating on the company. The average 12 month price target among brokers that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $32.33.

WTR has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Aqua America from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 13th. Hilliard Lyons restated an “underperform” rating and issued a $27.00 price target on shares of Aqua America in a research note on Wednesday, September 14th. Barclays PLC dropped their price target on shares of Aqua America from $38.00 to $34.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday, September 6th. Finally, Robert W. Baird initiated coverage on shares of Aqua America in a research note on Friday, October 14th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $32.00 price target for the company.

In other Aqua America news, Director Richard H. Glanton sold 4,650 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, September 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $31.20, for a total transaction of $145,080.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 4,583 shares in the company, valued at $142,989.60. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Company insiders own 0.33% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Bank of Hawaii acquired a new stake in Aqua America during the second quarter valued at $205,000. Geode Capital Management LLC raised its stake in Aqua America by 3.3% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 1,119,225 shares of the company’s stock valued at $35,613,000 after buying an additional 36,235 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in Aqua America by 3.8% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 14,910,774 shares of the company’s stock valued at $531,718,000 after buying an additional 545,819 shares during the last quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. raised its stake in Aqua America by 57.6% in the first quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 85,013 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,704,000 after buying an additional 31,085 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board acquired a new stake in Aqua America during the first quarter valued at $372,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 47.92% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Aqua America (NYSE:WTR) opened at 29.47 on Monday. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $29.68 and a 200 day moving average of $31.95. Aqua America has a 1-year low of $28.03 and a 1-year high of $35.83. The firm has a market cap of $5.23 billion, a PE ratio of 24.56 and a beta of 0.47.

Aqua America (NYSE:WTR) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, November 1st. The company reported $0.41 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.40 by $0.01. Aqua America had a net margin of 25.97% and a return on equity of 13.19%. The business had revenue of $226.60 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $223.61 million. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.38 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts anticipate that Aqua America will post $1.32 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 1st. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, November 16th will be paid a dividend of $0.1913 per share. The ex-dividend date is Monday, November 14th. This represents a $0.77 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.60%. Aqua America’s payout ratio is 64.71%.

About Aqua America

Aqua America, Inc is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides water or wastewater services in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Indiana and Virginia, among others. It is the holding company for its subsidiary, Aqua Pennsylvania, Inc Its market-based activities are conducted through Aqua Resources Inc and Aqua Infrastructure, LLC.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:WTR

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