Bahl & Gaynor Inc. raised its stake in Atmos Energy Co. (NYSE:ATO) by 2.6% during the first quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 12,670 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after buying an additional 325 shares during the period. Bahl & Gaynor Inc.’s holdings in Atmos Energy were worth $1,001,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. State Street Corp increased its position in Atmos Energy by 4.8% in the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 6,595,562 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $489,054,000 after buying an additional 303,055 shares during the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. increased its position in Atmos Energy by 18.4% in the first quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 2,738,696 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $216,330,000 after buying an additional 425,986 shares during the last quarter. Scout Investments Inc. increased its position in Atmos Energy by 23.8% in the first quarter. Scout Investments Inc. now owns 1,561,103 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $115,928,000 after buying an additional 300,332 shares during the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its position in Atmos Energy by 6.0% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,353,213 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $106,891,000 after buying an additional 76,037 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Hennessy Advisors Inc. increased its position in Atmos Energy by 4.7% in the first quarter. Hennessy Advisors Inc. now owns 887,736 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $70,122,000 after buying an additional 40,000 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 69.86% of the company’s stock.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Atmos Energy (NYSE:ATO)

Shares of Atmos Energy Co. (NYSE:ATO) traded up 0.90% during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $81.08. 244,626 shares of the stock traded hands. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $80.50 and its 200 day moving average price is $76.37. The company has a market capitalization of $8.54 billion, a PE ratio of 21.57 and a beta of 0.29. Atmos Energy Co. has a 1-year low of $68.51 and a 1-year high of $82.74.

Atmos Energy (NYSE:ATO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 3rd. The utilities provider reported $1.52 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.42 by $0.10. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.40 earnings per share. Equities research analysts forecast that Atmos Energy Co. will post $3.59 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 5th. Investors of record on Monday, May 22nd will be paid a $0.45 dividend. This represents a $1.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.22%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, May 18th. Atmos Energy’s payout ratio is 50.14%.

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ATO has been the topic of several research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Atmos Energy from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $85.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Monday, February 13th. Barclays PLC set a $75.00 price objective on shares of Atmos Energy and gave the stock a “sell” rating in a report on Saturday, May 6th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $81.50.

Atmos Energy Company Profile

Atmos Energy Corporation is engaged primarily in the regulated natural gas distribution and pipeline businesses, as well as other nonregulated natural gas businesses. The Company operates through three segments: regulated distribution segment, which includes its regulated distribution and related sales operations; regulated pipeline segment, which includes the pipeline and storage operations of its Atmos Pipeline-Texas Division, and nonregulated segment, which includes its nonregulated natural gas management, nonregulated natural gas transmission, storage and other services.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:ATO

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