Fortis (NYSE:FTS) Raised to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Fortis (NYSE:FTS) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report issued on Thursday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Fortis, Inc. is engaged in electric and gas utility business. The Company offers regulated utilities comprised of electric and gas as well as engages in non-regulated hydroelectric operations. It operates primarily in Canada, United States and Caribbean. Fortis, Inc. is based in St John’s, Canada. “

Other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports about the stock. ValuEngine cut shares of Verso from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Thursday, May 23rd. Veritas Investment Research lowered shares of Fortis from a buy rating to a sell rating in a research note on Friday, May 3rd. Raymond James set a $86.00 price objective on shares of Gilead Sciences and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 23rd. UBS Group restated a buy rating on shares of Fortis in a research note on Friday, June 7th. Finally, Bank of America set a $54.00 price objective on shares of Fortis and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, May 2nd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $52.33.

Shares of FTS opened at $39.96 on Thursday. Fortis has a 1-year low of $31.37 and a 1-year high of $40.47. The stock has a market capitalization of $17.42 billion, a PE ratio of 20.92, a PEG ratio of 4.01 and a beta of 0.18. The company has a current ratio of 0.70, a quick ratio of 0.62 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.37. The company has a fifty day moving average of $39.07.

Fortis (NYSE:FTS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.55 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.55. Fortis had a net margin of 12.61% and a return on equity of 6.44%. The firm had revenue of $1.83 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.72 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.69 earnings per share. On average, analysts anticipate that Fortis will post 1.95 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of FTS. GQG Partners LLC acquired a new position in Fortis in the fourth quarter valued at $152,884,000. Norges Bank acquired a new position in Fortis in the fourth quarter valued at $136,106,000. Toronto Dominion Bank increased its stake in Fortis by 40.6% in the first quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 11,480,664 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $424,250,000 after purchasing an additional 3,314,547 shares during the period. BRITISH COLUMBIA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Corp acquired a new position in shares of Fortis during the first quarter worth about $64,275,000. Finally, Artisan Partners Limited Partnership increased its stake in shares of Fortis by 144.5% during the first quarter. Artisan Partners Limited Partnership now owns 1,651,719 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $61,046,000 after acquiring an additional 976,119 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 52.02% of the company’s stock.

About Fortis

Fortis Inc operates as an electric and gas utility company in Canada, the United States, and the Caribbean. It generates, transmits, and distributes electricity to approximately 425,000 retail customers in southeastern Arizona; and 97,000 retail customers in Arizona's Mohave and Santa Cruz counties with an aggregate capacity of 3,377 MW (MW), including 57 MW of solar capacity.

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