Thrivent Financial For Lutherans raised its stake in shares of Northwest Natural Gas Company (NYSE:NWN) by 4.3% during the first quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 16,080 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after buying an additional 670 shares during the period. Thrivent Financial For Lutherans owned approximately 0.06% of Northwest Natural Gas worth $950,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Other hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. Mason Street Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Northwest Natural Gas by 7.2% in the first quarter. Mason Street Advisors LLC now owns 6,695 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $396,000 after buying an additional 452 shares during the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Northwest Natural Gas by 2.3% in the fourth quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 54,827 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $3,279,000 after buying an additional 1,214 shares in the last quarter. Neuburgh Advisers LLC boosted its stake in Northwest Natural Gas by 4.7% in the first quarter. Neuburgh Advisers LLC now owns 2,278 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $135,000 after buying an additional 102 shares in the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. acquired a new stake in Northwest Natural Gas during the fourth quarter worth $3,758,000. Finally, Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. acquired a new stake in Northwest Natural Gas during the first quarter worth $139,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 63.71% of the company’s stock.

Northwest Natural Gas Company (NYSE NWN) traded down 0.46% during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $64.45. The company had a trading volume of 109,872 shares. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $61.44 and its 200-day moving average price is $60.03. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.85 billion, a PE ratio of 29.43 and a beta of 0.43. Northwest Natural Gas Company has a 12-month low of $53.50 and a 12-month high of $65.39.

Northwest Natural Gas (NYSE:NWN) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, August 2nd. The utilities provider reported $0.10 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.06 by $0.04. Northwest Natural Gas had a net margin of 8.72% and a return on equity of 7.57%. The business had revenue of $136.24 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $78.51 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.07 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 37.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts forecast that Northwest Natural Gas Company will post $2.17 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, August 15th. Stockholders of record on Monday, July 31st will be issued a dividend of $0.47 per share. This represents a $1.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.92%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, July 27th. Northwest Natural Gas’s payout ratio is 86.24%.

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Several research firms have recently commented on NWN. BidaskClub raised Northwest Natural Gas from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Zacks Investment Research lowered Northwest Natural Gas from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 12th. Finally, Sidoti reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $75.00 target price (up from $68.00) on shares of Northwest Natural Gas in a report on Monday, June 19th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $64.00.

In other news, VP Kimberly A. Heiting sold 2,700 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, June 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $61.58, for a total transaction of $166,266.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 4,807 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $296,015.06. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, VP Shawn M. Filippi sold 1,200 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.27, for a total transaction of $74,724.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 1,330 shares in the company, valued at approximately $82,819.10. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 6,224 shares of company stock worth $384,376. Corporate insiders own 1.48% of the company’s stock.

About Northwest Natural Gas

Northwest Natural Gas Company (NW Natural) is engaged in the distribution of natural gas. The Company’s segments include Local Gas Distribution, Gas Storage and other. The Company maintains operations in Oregon, Washington and California and conducts businesses through NW Natural and its subsidiaries.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Northwest Natural Gas (NYSE:NWN)

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