MDU Resources Group Inc. (NYSE:MDU)’s share price gapped down before the market opened on Tuesday . The stock had previously closed at $24.22, but opened at $24.24. MDU Resources Group shares last traded at $24.48, with a volume of 340,055 shares traded.

MDU has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. Argus upgraded shares of MDU Resources Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $26.00 target price on the stock in a report on Tuesday, May 31st. Williams Capital reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of MDU Resources Group in a report on Friday, August 12th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of MDU Resources Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 19th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $21.90.

The company’s market cap is $4.79 billion. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $23.61 and its 200-day moving average price is $22.06.

MDU Resources Group (NYSE:MDU) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.24 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.03. The business earned $1.04 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.07 billion. MDU Resources Group had a negative net margin of 3.99% and a positive return on equity of 8.39%. The business’s revenue was up 11.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.15 EPS. On average, analysts anticipate that MDU Resources Group Inc. will post $1.12 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Saturday, October 1st. Stockholders of record on Thursday, September 8th will be issued a $0.1875 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, September 6th. This represents a $0.75 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.06%. MDU Resources Group’s dividend payout ratio is presently -85.23%.

In other news, Director Thomas S. Everist sold 30,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $23.32, for a total value of $699,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 79,572 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,855,619.04. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. 1.10% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Norges Bank acquired a new position in MDU Resources Group during the fourth quarter valued at $33,673,000. Prudential Financial Inc. increased its position in MDU Resources Group by 231.6% in the first quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 2,496,864 shares of the company’s stock valued at $48,589,000 after buying an additional 1,743,872 shares during the period. State Street Corp increased its position in MDU Resources Group by 9.7% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 15,317,653 shares of the company’s stock valued at $298,091,000 after buying an additional 1,348,586 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its position in MDU Resources Group by 9.2% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 15,848,829 shares of the company’s stock valued at $380,372,000 after buying an additional 1,339,894 shares during the period. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC increased its position in MDU Resources Group by 1,648.2% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 971,150 shares of the company’s stock valued at $18,899,000 after buying an additional 915,600 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 63.55% of the company’s stock.

About MDU Resources Group

MDU Resources Group, Inc is a diversified natural resource company. Montana-Dakota Utilities Co (Montana-Dakota) is a public utility division of the Company. Montana-Dakota, through the electric and natural gas distribution segments, generates, transmits and distributes electricity and distributes natural gas.

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