Laurel Wealth Advisors Inc. lifted its holdings in Southern Company (The) (NYSE:SO) by 0.2% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 30,093 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 48 shares during the period. Laurel Wealth Advisors Inc.’s holdings in Southern Company (The) were worth $1,440,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Southern Company (The) in the second quarter worth about $100,000. Monroe Bank & Trust MI lifted its position in shares of Southern Company (The) by 17.9% in the second quarter. Monroe Bank & Trust MI now owns 2,300 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $110,000 after buying an additional 350 shares in the last quarter. AlphaMark Advisors LLC lifted its position in shares of Southern Company (The) by 0.6% in the second quarter. AlphaMark Advisors LLC now owns 2,363 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $113,000 after buying an additional 14 shares in the last quarter. IHT Wealth Management LLC lifted its position in shares of Southern Company (The) by 15.3% in the first quarter. IHT Wealth Management LLC now owns 2,281 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $115,000 after buying an additional 302 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Ruggie Capital Group lifted its position in shares of Southern Company (The) by 228.0% in the first quarter. Ruggie Capital Group now owns 2,578 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $128,000 after buying an additional 1,792 shares in the last quarter. 52.88% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

A number of research firms recently commented on SO. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Southern Company (The) from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, November 3rd. Bank of America Corporation reiterated an “underperform” rating and issued a $51.00 target price on shares of Southern Company (The) in a research report on Tuesday, October 24th. SunTrust Banks, Inc. reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $52.00 target price on shares of Southern Company (The) in a research report on Friday, October 20th. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $56.00 target price (up from $55.00) on shares of Southern Company (The) in a research report on Tuesday, September 12th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group upgraded Southern Company (The) from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 3rd. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company. Southern Company (The) presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $49.72.

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Southern Company (SO) opened at $52.31 on Wednesday. The company has a market capitalization of $52,008.00, a P/E ratio of 18.84, a PEG ratio of 4.68 and a beta of 0.15. Southern Company has a 52 week low of $46.20 and a 52 week high of $53.51. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.73, a quick ratio of 0.57 and a current ratio of 0.73.

Southern Company (The) (NYSE:SO) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The utilities provider reported $1.12 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.08 by $0.04. The firm had revenue of $6.20 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.16 billion. Southern Company (The) had a return on equity of 10.81% and a net margin of 2.59%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 1.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.27 earnings per share. sell-side analysts forecast that Southern Company will post 2.95 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, December 6th. Stockholders of record on Monday, November 20th will be paid a dividend of $0.58 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, November 17th. This represents a $2.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.44%. Southern Company (The)’s dividend payout ratio is 414.29%.

In other news, insider Ann P. Daiss sold 5,080 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.28, for a total transaction of $270,662.40. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 7,474 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $398,214.72. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, EVP Christopher C. Womack sold 46,641 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, November 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.00, for a total value of $2,471,973.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 56,799 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,010,347. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 213,813 shares of company stock worth $11,029,988. Insiders own 0.74% of the company’s stock.

Southern Company (The) Profile

The Southern Company (Southern Company) is a holding company. The Company owns all of the stock of the traditional electric operating companies and the parent entities of Southern Power Company (Southern Power) and Southern Company Gas, and owns other direct and indirect subsidiaries. The Company’s segments include Gas distribution operations, Gas marketing services, Wholesale gas services, Gas midstream operations and All other.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Southern Company (The) (NYSE:SO)

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