Southwest Gas Holdings Inc (NYSE:SWX) saw a large decline in short interest in the month of April. As of April 28th, there was short interest totalling 296,021 shares, a decline of 41.0% from the April 13th total of 501,708 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 311,893 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 0.9 days. Approximately 0.6% of the shares of the company are short sold.

Southwest Gas Holdings (NYSE:SWX) traded up 0.52% during trading on Friday, hitting $77.58. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 19,645 shares. The company has a 50-day moving average of $82.81 and a 200 day moving average of $79.55. The firm has a market cap of $3.69 billion, a PE ratio of 25.42 and a beta of 0.51. Southwest Gas Holdings has a one year low of $64.26 and a one year high of $86.65.

Southwest Gas Holdings (NYSE:SWX) last announced its earnings results on Monday, May 8th. The utilities provider reported $1.45 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.63 by $0.18. Southwest Gas Holdings had a return on equity of 9.26% and a net margin of 6.11%. The business had revenue of $654.74 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $741.80 million. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.58 EPS. Southwest Gas Holdings’s quarterly revenue was down 10.5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts forecast that Southwest Gas Holdings will post $3.41 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 1st. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, August 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.495 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, August 11th. This represents a $1.98 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.57%. Southwest Gas Holdings’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 56.25%.

In other Southwest Gas Holdings news, SVP Eric Debonis sold 350 shares of Southwest Gas Holdings stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $80.02, for a total transaction of $28,007.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 20,057 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,604,961.14. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Insiders own 1.34% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. HighTower Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Southwest Gas Holdings by 0.7% in the first quarter. HighTower Advisors LLC now owns 3,709 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $307,000 after buying an additional 27 shares during the last quarter. Credit Suisse AG increased its stake in shares of Southwest Gas Holdings by 1.7% in the first quarter. Credit Suisse AG now owns 104,535 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $8,666,000 after buying an additional 1,722 shares during the last quarter. Jane Street Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Southwest Gas Holdings during the first quarter worth approximately $258,000. AQR Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Southwest Gas Holdings by 34.0% in the first quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 725,020 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $60,111,000 after buying an additional 184,040 shares during the last quarter. Finally, BlueCrest Capital Management Ltd purchased a new stake in shares of Southwest Gas Holdings during the first quarter worth approximately $9,972,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 76.58% of the company’s stock.

A number of brokerages have commented on SWX. Zacks Investment Research cut Southwest Gas Holdings from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, April 5th. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “sell” rating and set a $68.00 price objective on shares of Southwest Gas Holdings in a research note on Friday, March 31st. Finally, Bank of America Corp lowered Southwest Gas Holdings from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $88.00 price objective for the company. in a research note on Monday, March 6th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and four have given a hold rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $80.75.

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About Southwest Gas Holdings

Southwest Gas Holdings, Inc, formerly Southwest Gas Corporation, is engaged in the business of purchasing, distributing and transporting natural gas. The Company operates through two segments: natural gas operations and construction services, which includes the operations of the Company’s subsidiary, Centuri Construction Group, Inc (Centuri).

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