Todays Report: Today, Jefferies Group Comments on Southwest Gas Corp.’s FY2017 Earnings (SWX)

Today, Jefferies Group Comments on Southwest Gas Corp.’s FY2017 Earnings (SWX)

Southwest Gas Corp. (NYSE:SWX) – Investment analysts at Jefferies Group boosted their FY2017 EPS estimates for Southwest Gas Corp. in a report issued on Thursday. Jefferies Group analyst C. Sighinolfi now expects that the firm will earn $3.53 per share for the year, up from their prior forecast of $3.52. Jefferies Group has a “Hold” rating and a $65.00 price objective on the stock.

A number of other equities research analysts have also weighed in on the company. Zacks Investment Research raised Southwest Gas Corp. from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, October 1st. Argus reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Southwest Gas Corp. in a report on Thursday, September 8th. Finally, Citigroup Inc. lifted their price objective on Southwest Gas Corp. from $62.00 to $79.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 27th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, Southwest Gas Corp. presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $71.50.

Shares of Southwest Gas Corp. (NYSE:SWX) opened at 66.77 on Monday. The firm has a market cap of $3.17 billion, a PE ratio of 21.81 and a beta of 0.54. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $69.40 and a 200 day moving average price of $70.93. 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 posted its quarterly earnings results on Monday, August 8th. The company reported $0.19 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate 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 firm earned $547.70 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $559.21 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.13 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.7% on a year-over-year basis.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 1st. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, November 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.45 per share. This represents a $1.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.70%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, November 10th. Southwest Gas Corp.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 59.02%.

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

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in Southwest Gas Corp. by 9.6% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 4,098,310 shares of the company’s stock worth $322,579,000 after buying an additional 359,211 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors increased 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 valued at $202,156,000 after buying an additional 66,558 shares during the period. State Street Corp increased its position in shares of Southwest Gas Corp. by 47.2% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 1,598,917 shares of the company’s stock valued at $125,848,000 after buying an additional 512,734 shares during the period. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. increased its position in shares of Southwest Gas Corp. by 25.4% in the second quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 1,547,633 shares of the company’s stock valued at $121,814,000 after buying an additional 313,860 shares during the period. Finally, Macquarie Group Ltd. increased its position in shares of Southwest Gas Corp. by 34.8% in the second quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 1,290,116 shares of the company’s stock valued at $101,545,000 after buying an additional 333,337 shares during the period. 80.17% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Southwest Gas Corp.

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