Southern Co (SO) Position Raised by Everence Capital Management Inc.

Everence Capital Management Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Southern Co (NYSE:SO) by 22.5% in the 1st quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The firm owned 43,795 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 8,047 shares during the period. Everence Capital Management Inc.’s holdings in Southern were worth $2,263,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Old Port Advisors bought a new position in shares of Southern in the first quarter valued at approximately $205,000. Financial Architects Inc lifted its holdings in Southern by 11.7% during the fourth quarter. Financial Architects Inc now owns 17,924 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $787,000 after acquiring an additional 1,877 shares during the period. American Asset Management Inc. lifted its holdings in Southern by 13.4% during the fourth quarter. American Asset Management Inc. now owns 13,520 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $594,000 after acquiring an additional 1,595 shares during the period. Monte Financial Group LLC lifted its holdings in Southern by 2.3% during the first quarter. Monte Financial Group LLC now owns 62,474 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $3,229,000 after acquiring an additional 1,394 shares during the period. Finally, Rampart Investment Management Company LLC lifted its holdings in Southern by 168.3% during the fourth quarter. Rampart Investment Management Company LLC now owns 77,416 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $3,400,000 after acquiring an additional 48,561 shares during the period. 56.59% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

SO has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. Evercore ISI raised Southern from an “in-line” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, May 3rd. reissued a “sell” rating on shares of Southern in a research report on Wednesday, February 13th. Citigroup raised Southern from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and raised their target price for the stock from $45.00 to $50.00 in a research report on Thursday, January 24th. SunTrust Banks reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $52.00 target price on shares of Southern in a research report on Monday, February 25th. Finally, reissued a “sell” rating on shares of Southern in a research report on Wednesday, February 13th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. Southern presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $48.15.

In other news, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 7,000 shares of Southern stock in a transaction on Thursday, April 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.68, for a total value of $361,760.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 77,772 shares in the company, valued at $4,019,256.96. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Henry A. Clark III purchased 2,000 shares of Southern stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, March 5th. The stock was bought at an average price of $50.19 per share, with a total value of $100,380.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 2,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $100,380. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 267,249 shares of company stock valued at $13,714,078. 0.73% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Shares of NYSE SO opened at $53.63 on Thursday. The firm has a market capitalization of $56.28 billion, a PE ratio of 17.47, a P/E/G ratio of 3.97 and a beta of 0.21. Southern Co has a fifty-two week low of $42.42 and a fifty-two week high of $54.14. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.37, a current ratio of 0.88 and a quick ratio of 0.69.

Southern (NYSE:SO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.70 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.70. The company had revenue of $5.41 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.66 billion. Southern had a return on equity of 10.37% and a net margin of 15.03%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 15.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $0.88 earnings per share. As a group, equities research analysts predict that Southern Co will post 3.03 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 6th. Stockholders of record on Monday, May 20th will be given a $0.62 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, May 17th. This is a boost from Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.60. This represents a $2.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.62%. Southern’s payout ratio is 78.18%.

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Southern Company Profile

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.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Southern (NYSE:SO)

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