Equities research analysts forecast that The Southern Company (NYSE:SO) will report $5.87 billion in sales for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Two analysts have issued estimates for The Southern's earnings, with the lowest sales estimate coming in at $5.83 billion and the highest estimate coming in at $5.91 billion. The Southern posted sales of $5.62 billion in the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year over year growth rate of 4.4%. The company is expected to announce its next quarterly earnings results before the market opens on Thursday, November 4th.
According to Zacks, analysts expect that The Southern will report full-year sales of $22.27 billion for the current fiscal year, with estimates ranging from $22.12 billion to $22.43 billion. For the next fiscal year, analysts anticipate that the business will post sales of $23.21 billion, with estimates ranging from $22.97 billion to $23.59 billion. Zacks' sales averages are a mean average based on a survey of research firms that that provide coverage for The Southern.
The Southern (NYSE:SO) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 29th. The utilities provider reported $0.84 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks' consensus estimate of $0.79 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $5.20 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts' expectations of $5 billion. The Southern had a net margin of 14.47% and a return on equity of 11.43%.
A number of equities analysts have issued reports on SO shares. Wells Fargo & Company restated a "buy" rating on shares of The Southern in a report on Monday, August 2nd. Guggenheim raised shares of The Southern from a "neutral" rating to a "buy" rating and set a $72.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, September 7th. Morgan Stanley decreased their price target on shares of The Southern from $64.00 to $63.00 and set an "underweight" rating for the company in a research note on Friday, September 17th. Finally, Mizuho cut their price objective on shares of The Southern from $60.00 to $55.00 and set an "underperform" rating on the stock in a research report on Monday, October 4th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, one has given a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the stock presently has an average rating of "Hold" and a consensus price target of $68.23.
NYSE SO opened at $62.51 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $66.19 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.05, a P/E/G ratio of 4.01 and a beta of 0.45. The business has a 50 day simple moving average of $64.81 and a 200 day simple moving average of $64.00. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.46, a current ratio of 0.82 and a quick ratio of 0.65. The Southern has a one year low of $56.69 and a one year high of $67.54.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, September 7th. Stockholders of record on Monday, August 16th were issued a $0.66 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Friday, August 13th. This represents a $2.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.22%. The Southern's dividend payout ratio is presently 81.23%.
In other news, EVP Martin Bernard Davis sold 7,000 shares of The Southern stock in a transaction on Friday, July 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.61, for a total transaction of $452,270.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 28,089 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,814,830.29. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Ann P. Daiss sold 1,750 shares of the firm's stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.34, for a total transaction of $112,595.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 89,747 shares of company stock valued at $5,969,659 in the last quarter. 0.43% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. JFS Wealth Advisors LLC boosted its position in The Southern by 530.3% during the second quarter. JFS Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 416 shares of the utilities provider's stock worth $25,000 after purchasing an additional 350 shares during the period. Penserra Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of The Southern during the second quarter worth $27,000. BDO Wealth Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of The Southern in the first quarter worth $28,000. Lion Street Advisors LLC purchased a new position in shares of The Southern in the second quarter valued at $32,000. Finally, Sterling Investment Advisors Ltd. grew its position in shares of The Southern by 40.0% in the second quarter. Sterling Investment Advisors Ltd. now owns 700 shares of the utilities provider's stock valued at $42,000 after purchasing an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. 59.30% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
The Southern Company Profile
The Southern Co is a holding company. The firm engages in the sale of electricity. It operates through the following segments: Traditional Electric Operating Companies, Southern Power and Southern Company Gas. The Traditional Electric Operating Companies segment refers to vertically integrated utilities that own generation, transmission and distribution facilities, and supplies electric services in the states of Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and Mississippi.
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