Davis Capital Management Raises Position in The Southern Company (NYSE:SO)

Davis Capital Management grew its position in The Southern Company (NYSE:SOFree Report) by 3.9% during the 1st quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The fund owned 22,284 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after buying an additional 831 shares during the quarter. Southern makes up about 1.4% of Davis Capital Management’s portfolio, making the stock its 20th largest holding. Davis Capital Management’s holdings in Southern were worth $1,584,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Southern by 0.4% during the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 99,572,665 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $6,444,343,000 after buying an additional 352,023 shares during the period. Capital International Investors raised its position in Southern by 53.2% in the fourth quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 16,444,163 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,153,065,000 after purchasing an additional 5,707,845 shares during the period. Northern Trust Corp raised its position in Southern by 1.6% in the third quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 10,737,843 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $694,953,000 after purchasing an additional 163,986 shares during the period. Morgan Stanley raised its position in Southern by 3.7% in the third quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 9,811,307 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $634,988,000 after purchasing an additional 349,122 shares during the period. Finally, Norges Bank purchased a new stake in Southern in the 4th quarter valued at about $631,068,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 64.10% of the company’s stock.

Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth

A number of research analysts have commented on the stock. Mizuho upped their target price on shares of Southern from $73.00 to $76.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 2nd. Scotiabank decreased their price target on Southern from $80.00 to $77.00 and set a “sector outperform” rating on the stock in a research note on Monday, April 22nd. Bank of America upped their price target on Southern from $73.00 to $79.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Friday, May 31st. Argus increased their target price on Southern from $75.00 to $90.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 15th. Finally, Morgan Stanley increased their target price on Southern from $67.00 to $74.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 28th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating, seven have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the stock currently has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average target price of $76.36.

View Our Latest Research Report on Southern

Insider Buying and Selling at Southern

In other news, CEO Kimberly S. Greene sold 9,126 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $75.04, for a total value of $684,815.04. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 121,504 shares in the company, valued at approximately $9,117,660.16. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 0.18% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Southern Stock Performance

SO traded up $0.26 on Wednesday, reaching $77.94. The company had a trading volume of 3,356,398 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,755,792. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $76.19 and a 200-day moving average price of $71.89. The stock has a market capitalization of $85.22 billion, a PE ratio of 20.14, a P/E/G ratio of 2.80 and a beta of 0.51. The Southern Company has a 1 year low of $61.56 and a 1 year high of $80.84. The company has a quick ratio of 0.65, a current ratio of 0.92 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.67.

Southern (NYSE:SOGet Free Report) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, May 2nd. The utilities provider reported $1.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.90 by $0.13. Southern had a return on equity of 12.07% and a net margin of 16.74%. The firm had revenue of $6.65 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.59 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.79 EPS. The business’s revenue was up 2.6% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, research analysts forecast that The Southern Company will post 3.99 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Southern Increases Dividend

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 6th. Investors of record on Monday, May 20th were given a $0.72 dividend. This is an increase from Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.70. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, May 17th. This represents a $2.88 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.70%. Southern’s dividend payout ratio is 74.42%.

Southern Company Profile

(Free Report)

The Southern Company, through its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity. The company also develops, constructs, acquires, owns, and manages power generation assets, including renewable energy projects and sells electricity in the wholesale market; and distributes natural gas in Illinois, Georgia, Virginia, and Tennessee, as well as provides gas marketing services, gas distribution operations, and gas pipeline investments operations.

Further Reading

Want to see what other hedge funds are holding SO? Visit HoldingsChannel.com to get the latest 13F filings and insider trades for The Southern Company (NYSE:SOFree Report).

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Southern (NYSE:SO)

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