Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report issued on Tuesday morning.
According to Zacks, “NorthWestern Energy is a growing, financially sound, investor-owned energy company. It has provided reliable and affordable energy to customers in Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska. The company got its start in small communities, providing essential service that allowed them to grow and prosper. “
Other analysts have also recently issued reports about the stock. Credit Suisse Group raised their price target on shares of NorthWestern from $54.00 to $55.00 and gave the company a $58.28 rating in a report on Thursday, July 19th. Barclays initiated coverage on shares of NorthWestern in a research note on Tuesday, July 10th. They issued an equal weight rating and a $60.00 target price for the company. ValuEngine cut shares of NorthWestern from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Friday, November 2nd. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co lifted their target price on shares of NorthWestern from $59.00 to $61.00 and gave the stock a market perform rating in a research note on Monday, September 17th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. NorthWestern currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $61.00.
NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 23rd. The utilities provider reported $0.58 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.72 by ($0.14). NorthWestern had a net margin of 14.53% and a return on equity of 9.64%. The firm had revenue of $279.87 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $312.21 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.74 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 9.7% on a year-over-year basis. On average, research analysts forecast that NorthWestern will post 3.4 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, December 31st. Investors of record on Friday, December 14th will be paid a $0.55 dividend. This represents a $2.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.57%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, December 13th. NorthWestern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 66.67%.
A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in NWE. Guggenheim Capital LLC boosted its stake in NorthWestern by 10.2% in the 1st quarter. Guggenheim Capital LLC now owns 35,407 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,903,000 after purchasing an additional 3,268 shares in the last quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. raised its position in NorthWestern by 5.7% during the 1st quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 216,986 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $11,674,000 after buying an additional 11,750 shares during the last quarter. First PREMIER Bank raised its position in NorthWestern by 6.7% during the 2nd quarter. First PREMIER Bank now owns 135,570 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $7,761,000 after buying an additional 8,503 shares during the last quarter. Dalton Greiner Hartman Maher & Co. purchased a new position in NorthWestern during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $19,075,000. Finally, Nisa Investment Advisors LLC raised its position in NorthWestern by 3.2% during the 2nd quarter. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC now owns 70,115 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $4,014,000 after buying an additional 2,150 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 96.62% of the company’s stock.
NorthWestern Company Profile
NorthWestern Corporation, doing business as NorthWestern Energy, provides electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, and industrial customers. The company operates through Electric Operations and Natural Gas Operations segments. It generates, transmits, and distributes electricity; and produces, stores, transmits, and distributes natural gas, as well as owns municipal franchises to provide natural gas service in the communities.
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