USS Investment Management Ltd reduced its position in shares of Southern Co (NYSE:SO) by 27.4% in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 441,543 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 166,395 shares during the period. USS Investment Management Ltd’s holdings in Southern were worth $28,120,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other institutional investors have also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Elevated Capital Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Southern in the fourth quarter worth about $373,000. Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. lifted its holdings in Southern by 31.1% in the fourth quarter. Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. now owns 52,271 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $3,330,000 after buying an additional 12,395 shares during the period. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. lifted its holdings in Southern by 2.1% in the fourth quarter. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. now owns 63,344 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $4,035,000 after buying an additional 1,326 shares during the period. Robinson Value Management Ltd. purchased a new stake in Southern in the fourth quarter worth about $2,178,000. Finally, Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund purchased a new stake in Southern in the fourth quarter worth about $2,422,000. Institutional investors own 58.86% of the company’s stock.

Several brokerages have commented on SO. Credit Suisse Group raised their price objective on shares of Southern from $60.00 to $64.00 and gave the stock an “underperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 18th. SunTrust Banks raised their price objective on shares of Southern from $60.00 to $63.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 18th. Citigroup raised their price objective on shares of Southern from $61.00 to $73.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Monday, January 27th. Evercore ISI reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $63.50 target price on shares of Southern in a report on Sunday, December 15th. Finally, Morgan Stanley lifted their target price on shares of Southern from $58.00 to $60.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, January 22nd. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the company. Southern presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $62.79.

In other news, CEO Anthony L. Wilson sold 61,018 shares of Southern stock in a transaction on Wednesday, January 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $65.00, for a total transaction of $3,966,170.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 90,208 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,863,520. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, EVP Christopher C. Womack sold 54,966 shares of Southern stock in a transaction on Monday, January 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.50, for a total transaction of $3,545,307.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 65,131 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,200,949.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 2,216,238 shares of company stock valued at $139,613,163. 0.88% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

NYSE:SO traded down $0.52 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $69.02. The company had a trading volume of 5,014,751 shares, compared to its average volume of 4,242,576. The company has a current ratio of 0.94, a quick ratio of 0.77 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.37. Southern Co has a 52 week low of $48.42 and a 52 week high of $71.10. The firm has a market cap of $71.96 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.69, a PEG ratio of 4.80 and a beta of 0.15. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $66.50 and its 200-day moving average price is $62.00.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 6th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, February 18th will be given a $0.62 dividend. This represents a $2.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.59%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, February 14th. Southern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 80.78%.

About Southern

The Southern Company, through its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity. It operates in four segments: Gas Distribution Operations, Gas Pipeline Investments, Wholesale Gas Services, and Gas Marketing Services. The company also constructs, acquires, owns, and manages power generation assets, including renewable energy facilities and sells electricity in the wholesale market; and distributes natural gas in Illinois, Georgia, Virginia, and Tennessee, as well as provides gas marketing services, wholesale gas services, and gas pipeline investments operations.

Featured Story: What is the outlook for the FAANG stocks?

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Southern (NYSE:SO)

Receive News & Ratings for Southern Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Southern and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.