Christopher C. Womack Sells 75,144 Shares of Southern Co (NYSE:SO) Stock

Southern Co (NYSE:SO) EVP Christopher C. Womack sold 75,144 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, June 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.98, for a total value of $4,131,417.12. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 85,309 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,690,288.82. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website.

Shares of SO stock opened at $55.28 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $57.30 billion, a PE ratio of 18.01, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 4.04 and a beta of 0.19. The company has a 50-day moving average of $54.54. The company has a current ratio of 0.88, a quick ratio of 0.69 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.37. Southern Co has a 1-year low of $42.50 and a 1-year high of $56.54.

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

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 6th. Investors of record on Monday, May 20th were paid a dividend of $0.62 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, May 17th. This represents a $2.48 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.49%. This is a boost from Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.60. Southern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 80.78%.

Large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Thor Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Southern during the first quarter valued at approximately $26,000. Tompkins Financial Corp purchased a new stake in Southern in the first quarter worth $28,000. Lee Financial Co increased its position in Southern by 144.4% in the first quarter. Lee Financial Co now owns 550 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $28,000 after buying an additional 325 shares during the last quarter. Sontag Advisory LLC purchased a new stake in Southern in the fourth quarter worth $25,000. Finally, Gemmer Asset Management LLC increased its position in Southern by 58.0% in the first quarter. Gemmer Asset Management LLC now owns 681 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $35,000 after buying an additional 250 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 56.63% of the company’s stock.

Several research firms have recently weighed in on SO. Mizuho boosted their target price on Southern from $48.50 to $55.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 13th. KeyCorp assumed coverage on Southern in a research note on Tuesday, June 4th. They issued a “sector weight” rating for the company. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Southern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 14th. ValuEngine upgraded Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, May 10th. Finally, Barclays restated a “hold” rating and set a $57.00 price objective on shares of Southern in a research report on Wednesday, June 19th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $49.67.

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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