Southern (SO) Receives Coverage Optimism Rating of 0.12

Media stories about Southern (NYSE:SO) have been trending somewhat positive this week, Accern Sentiment Analysis reports. Accern ranks the sentiment of press coverage by monitoring more than 20 million blog and news sources. Accern ranks coverage of publicly-traded companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. Southern earned a news sentiment score of 0.12 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned news stories about the utilities provider an impact score of 45.9167657169488 out of 100, meaning that recent press coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the company’s share price in the next several days.

Here are some of the news articles that may have effected Accern’s rankings:

A number of research firms have issued reports on SO. Zacks Investment Research raised Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $57.00 target price for the company in a research report on Tuesday, December 12th. Mizuho reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $55.00 target price on shares of Southern in a research report on Friday, December 8th. Royal Bank of Canada raised Southern from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $53.00 target price for the company in a research report on Friday, September 29th. BidaskClub raised Southern from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 22nd. Finally, Citigroup reissued a “sell” rating and issued a $44.00 target price (up from $43.00) on shares of Southern in a research report on Tuesday, October 3rd. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $49.92.

Shares of Southern (NYSE SO) traded down $0.76 during midday trading on Tuesday, hitting $50.55. The stock had a trading volume of 5,331,800 shares, compared to its average volume of 4,707,187. The stock has a market capitalization of $51,496.16, a PE ratio of 18.66, a PEG ratio of 3.86 and a beta of 0.13. Southern has a one year low of $46.71 and a one year high of $53.51. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.73, a quick ratio of 0.57 and a current ratio of 0.73.

Southern (NYSE:SO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The utilities provider reported $1.12 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.08 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $6.20 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.16 billion. Southern had a return on equity of 10.81% and a net margin of 2.59%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 1.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.27 earnings per share. analysts predict that Southern will post 2.95 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, December 6th. Stockholders of record on Monday, November 20th were given a $0.58 dividend. This represents a $2.32 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.59%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, November 17th. Southern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 414.29%.

In related news, insider Ann P. Daiss sold 5,080 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, November 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.28, for a total transaction of $270,662.40. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 7,474 shares in the company, valued at $398,214.72. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, CEO William P. Bowers sold 85,151 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $50.00, for a total value of $4,257,550.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders have sold 213,813 shares of company stock valued at $11,029,988. 0.74% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

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About Southern

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.

Insider Buying and Selling by Quarter for Southern (NYSE:SO)

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