Southern Co (NYSE:SO) Expected to Post Quarterly Sales of $5.23 Billion

Brokerages expect Southern Co (NYSE:SO) to announce $5.23 billion in sales for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Two analysts have made estimates for Southern’s earnings, with estimates ranging from $5.02 billion to $5.43 billion. Southern reported sales of $5.34 billion during the same quarter last year, which indicates a negative year over year growth rate of 2.1%. The firm is expected to issue its next quarterly earnings report on Wednesday, February 19th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Southern will report full year sales of $21.69 billion for the current financial year, with estimates ranging from $21.53 billion to $21.83 billion. For the next financial year, analysts forecast that the business will report sales of $22.26 billion, with estimates ranging from $21.84 billion to $22.62 billion. Zacks’ sales averages are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that cover Southern.

Southern (NYSE:SO) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, October 30th. The utilities provider reported $1.34 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.14 by $0.20. Southern had a return on equity of 10.52% and a net margin of 21.02%. The company had revenue of $6 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.01 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $1.14 EPS. Southern’s quarterly revenue was down 2.7% compared to the same quarter last year.

A number of equities analysts recently issued reports on SO shares. SunTrust Banks set a $59.00 target price on Southern and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, September 3rd. ValuEngine cut Southern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 6th. Bank of America increased their target price on Southern from $60.00 to $64.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday, September 12th. Citigroup increased their target price on Southern from $55.00 to $61.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 29th. Finally, UBS Group increased their target price on Southern from $58.00 to $62.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, September 6th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $56.80.

Shares of SO opened at $60.47 on Tuesday. Southern has a 12-month low of $42.50 and a 12-month high of $63.09. The business’s fifty day moving average is $61.55 and its 200 day moving average is $57.37. The company has a quick ratio of 0.77, a current ratio of 0.94 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.37. The stock has a market cap of $64.35 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.70, a P/E/G ratio of 4.42 and a beta of 0.15.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 6th. Shareholders of record on Monday, November 18th will be paid a dividend of $0.62 per share. This represents a $2.48 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.10%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, November 15th. Southern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 80.78%.

In other Southern news, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 123,533 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.87, for a total transaction of $7,642,986.71. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 191,305 shares in the company, valued at approximately $11,836,040.35. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, September 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.28, for a total value of $116,560.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 69,772 shares in the company, valued at $4,066,312.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders have sold 177,533 shares of company stock worth $10,941,987. Company insiders own 0.88% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its stake in Southern by 3.4% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 88,169,680 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $4,874,020,000 after acquiring an additional 2,923,497 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in Southern by 2.2% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 70,040,340 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $3,871,830,000 after acquiring an additional 1,479,813 shares in the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA raised its stake in shares of Southern by 1.3% during the 3rd quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 25,104,853 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,550,726,000 after purchasing an additional 310,593 shares during the period. Northern Trust Corp raised its stake in shares of Southern by 2.8% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 12,493,021 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $690,614,000 after purchasing an additional 344,398 shares during the period. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its stake in shares of Southern by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 12,132,966 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $670,710,000 after purchasing an additional 64,362 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 58.51% of the company’s stock.

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.

Featured Article: What is the price-sales ratio?

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on Southern (SO)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Earnings History and Estimates for Southern (NYSE:SO)

Receive News & Ratings for Southern Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Southern and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.