The Jefferies Group Comments on Southwest Gas Corp.’s Q3 2016 Earnings (SWX)

The Jefferies Group Comments on Southwest Gas Corp.’s Q3 2016 Earnings (SWX)

Southwest Gas Corp. (NYSE:SWX) – Analysts at Jefferies Group reduced their Q3 2016 earnings per share estimates for Southwest Gas Corp. in a report released on Thursday. Jefferies Group analyst C. Sighinolfi now expects that the brokerage will earn $0.00 per share for the quarter, down from their prior forecast of $0.01. Jefferies Group has a “Hold” rating and a $65.00 price target on the stock. Jefferies Group also issued estimates for Southwest Gas Corp.’s FY2018 earnings at $3.68 EPS and FY2019 earnings at $3.67 EPS.

A number of other research analysts also recently commented on SWX. Citigroup Inc. upped their price objective on Southwest Gas Corp. from $62.00 to $79.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 27th. Argus restated a “hold” rating on shares of Southwest Gas Corp. in a research note on Thursday, September 8th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research downgraded Southwest Gas Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 13th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, Southwest Gas Corp. has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $71.50.

Shares of Southwest Gas Corp. (NYSE:SWX) traded up 0.34% on Friday, hitting $67.24. The stock had a trading volume of 71,412 shares. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $69.55 and its 200 day moving average price is $70.92. The firm has a market cap of $3.19 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.96 and a beta of 0.54. Southwest Gas Corp. has a 12-month low of $50.53 and a 12-month high of $79.58.

Southwest Gas Corp. (NYSE:SWX) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Monday, August 8th. The company reported $0.19 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.18 by $0.01. Southwest Gas Corp. had a return on equity of 9.07% and a net margin of 5.90%. The business earned $547.70 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $559.21 million. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.13 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.7% on a year-over-year basis.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Aperio Group LLC raised its position in shares of Southwest Gas Corp. by 17.4% in the first quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 11,631 shares of the company’s stock worth $766,000 after buying an additional 1,728 shares during the period. Prudential Financial Inc. raised its position in shares of Southwest Gas Corp. by 8.2% in the first quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 126,004 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,298,000 after buying an additional 9,582 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in shares of Southwest Gas Corp. by 13.6% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 44,329 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,920,000 after buying an additional 5,304 shares during the period. BlackRock Group LTD raised its position in shares of Southwest Gas Corp. by 7.6% in the first quarter. BlackRock Group LTD now owns 100,078 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,590,000 after buying an additional 7,080 shares during the period. Finally, BlackRock Fund Advisors raised its position in shares of Southwest Gas Corp. by 2.2% in the first quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 3,069,954 shares of the company’s stock worth $202,156,000 after buying an additional 66,558 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 80.16% of the company’s stock.

In related news, CFO Roy R. Centrella sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $71.54, for a total transaction of $71,540.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 31,618 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,261,951.72. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, SVP Eric Debonis sold 600 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $72.99, for a total value of $43,794.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 19,694 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,437,465.06. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 1.34% of the company’s stock.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 1st. Investors of record on Tuesday, November 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.45 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, November 10th. This represents a $1.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.69%. Southwest Gas Corp.’s payout ratio is currently 59.02%.

About Southwest Gas Corp.

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