Shares of Atmos Energy Corporation (NYSE:ATO) have been given an average recommendation of “Hold” by the seven brokerages that are currently covering the company, Marketbeat.com reports. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell recommendation, two have given a hold recommendation and four have assigned a buy recommendation to the company. The average 1 year price target among brokers that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $85.40.

Several equities analysts have recently issued reports on ATO shares. Barclays PLC set a $84.00 target price on Atmos Energy Corporation and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Sunday, August 6th. BidaskClub lowered Atmos Energy Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, June 30th. Zacks Investment Research lowered Atmos Energy Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, August 4th. J P Morgan Chase & Co reaffirmed an “overweight” rating and issued a $89.00 target price (up from $88.00) on shares of Atmos Energy Corporation in a report on Thursday, June 1st. Finally, Argus upped their target price on Atmos Energy Corporation from $89.00 to $92.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, June 13th.

Shares of Atmos Energy Corporation (NYSE ATO) traded down 0.58% during midday trading on Friday, hitting $87.16. 263,072 shares of the company were exchanged. Atmos Energy Corporation has a one year low of $68.51 and a one year high of $88.69. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $85.06 and its 200 day moving average price is $81.08. The firm has a market cap of $9.24 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.34 and a beta of 0.39.

Atmos Energy Corporation (NYSE:ATO) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, August 2nd. The utilities provider reported $0.67 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.66 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $526.50 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $596.52 million. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.64 earnings per share. Equities analysts expect that Atmos Energy Corporation will post $3.61 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 5th. Investors of record on Monday, August 21st will be paid a $0.45 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, August 17th. This represents a $1.80 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.07%. Atmos Energy Corporation’s payout ratio is 48.13%.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of ATO. Nationwide Fund Advisors increased its position in Atmos Energy Corporation by 37.6% in the first quarter. Nationwide Fund Advisors now owns 274,317 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $21,668,000 after buying an additional 74,949 shares during the last quarter. Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. purchased a new position in Atmos Energy Corporation during the first quarter valued at approximately $207,000. Retirement Systems of Alabama increased its position in Atmos Energy Corporation by 0.6% in the first quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 256,689 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $20,276,000 after buying an additional 1,527 shares during the last quarter. Hexavest Inc. purchased a new position in Atmos Energy Corporation during the first quarter valued at approximately $332,000. Finally, Boston Advisors LLC increased its position in Atmos Energy Corporation by 2.3% in the first quarter. Boston Advisors LLC now owns 6,862 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $542,000 after buying an additional 151 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.10% of the company’s stock.

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Atmos Energy Corporation 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.

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