Shares of Southwest Gas Holdings Inc (NYSE:SWX) have received a consensus rating of “Hold” from the seven ratings firms that are currently covering the company, Marketbeat.com reports. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, four have issued a hold recommendation and one has issued a buy recommendation on the company. The average 1 year price objective among brokers that have covered the stock in the last year is $83.00.
A number of analysts have issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Southwest Gas from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 27th. ValuEngine raised Southwest Gas from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, February 19th. UBS Group downgraded Southwest Gas from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and raised their target price for the stock from $88.00 to $89.00 in a research note on Friday, March 29th. Finally, Williams Capital reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Southwest Gas in a research note on Monday, March 18th.
In other news, Director Thomas E. Chestnut sold 1,700 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, March 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $83.54, for a total transaction of $142,018.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 27,323 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,282,563.42. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, SVP Eric Debonis purchased 2,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 15th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $82.67 per share, with a total value of $165,340.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the senior vice president now owns 11,150 shares in the company, valued at approximately $921,770.50. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.83% of the company’s stock.
Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Retirement Systems of Alabama grew its holdings in shares of Southwest Gas by 0.6% during the 1st quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 69,098 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $5,684,000 after purchasing an additional 392 shares during the period. Mercer Global Advisors Inc. ADV purchased a new position in Southwest Gas during the 1st quarter valued at about $734,000. Ledyard National Bank purchased a new position in Southwest Gas during the 1st quarter valued at about $3,775,000. Hennessy Advisors Inc. boosted its holdings in Southwest Gas by 2.3% during the 1st quarter. Hennessy Advisors Inc. now owns 222,317 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $18,288,000 after acquiring an additional 5,000 shares during the period. Finally, Contravisory Investment Management Inc. purchased a new position in Southwest Gas during the 1st quarter valued at about $165,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 84.62% of the company’s stock.
Shares of SWX opened at $84.01 on Tuesday. Southwest Gas has a 52-week low of $68.70 and a 52-week high of $85.97. The firm has a market capitalization of $4.44 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.83, a P/E/G ratio of 3.48 and a beta of 0.37. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.94, a current ratio of 0.89 and a quick ratio of 0.89.
Southwest Gas (NYSE:SWX) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, February 27th. The utilities provider reported $1.36 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.53 by ($0.17). Southwest Gas had a return on equity of 9.11% and a net margin of 6.33%. The company had revenue of $786.65 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $375.47 million. During the same period last year, the business earned $2.00 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 6.2% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, sell-side analysts forecast that Southwest Gas will post 3.88 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 3rd. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, May 15th will be issued a dividend of $0.545 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, May 14th. This is a boost from Southwest Gas’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.52. This represents a $2.18 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.59%. Southwest Gas’s dividend payout ratio is currently 56.52%.
Southwest Gas Company Profile
Southwest Gas Holdings, Inc, through its subsidiaries, purchases, distributes, and transports natural gas in Arizona, Nevada, and California. The company operates through two segments, Natural Gas Operations and Utility Infrastructure Services. As of December 31, 2018, it had 2,047,000 residential, commercial, industrial, and other natural gas customers.
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