Woodmont Investment Counsel LLC grew its position in shares of Southern Company (The) (NYSE:SO) by 3.4% in the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 94,282 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 3,087 shares during the period. Southern comprises 1.3% of Woodmont Investment Counsel LLC’s portfolio, making the stock its 20th largest position. Woodmont Investment Counsel LLC’s holdings in Southern were worth $4,633,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other large investors have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC bought a new position in Southern in the second quarter worth about $100,000. Farmers & Merchants Trust Co of Chambersburg PA bought a new position in Southern in the third quarter worth about $105,000. Monroe Bank & Trust MI raised its stake in Southern 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 raised its stake in Southern 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. Finally, Barnett & Company Inc. raised its stake in Southern by 25.0% in the second quarter. Barnett & Company Inc. now owns 2,725 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $130,000 after buying an additional 545 shares in the last quarter. 53.78% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
In other news, EVP Christopher C. Womack sold 46,641 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, November 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.00, for a total transaction of $2,471,973.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 56,799 shares in the company, valued at $3,010,347. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, CEO William P. Bowers sold 85,151 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $50.00, for a total transaction of $4,257,550.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders have sold 213,813 shares of company stock worth $11,029,988. Corporate insiders own 1.00% of the company’s stock.
Southern (NYSE:SO) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The utilities provider reported $1.12 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.08 by $0.04. Southern had a net margin of 2.59% and a return on equity of 10.81%. The firm had revenue of $6.20 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.16 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $1.27 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 1.0% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts forecast that Southern Company will post 2.95 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, December 6th. Stockholders of record on Monday, November 20th were issued a dividend of $0.58 per share. This represents a $2.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.52%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, November 17th. Southern’s payout ratio is 414.29%.
A number of equities analysts recently issued reports on SO shares. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Southern from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, September 11th. Guggenheim raised shares of Southern from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price target for the stock from $49.00 to $56.00 in a research note on Thursday, September 14th. Mizuho raised shares of Southern from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $53.00 target price for the company in a research note on Tuesday, September 5th. SunTrust Banks reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $52.00 target price on shares of Southern in a research note on Friday, October 20th. Finally, KeyCorp reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Southern in a research note on Friday, September 1st. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $49.92.
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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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