$0.33 Earnings Per Share Expected for The Southern Company (NYSE:SO) This Quarter

Equities research analysts predict that The Southern Company (NYSE:SO) will post earnings of $0.33 per share for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Two analysts have provided estimates for Southern’s earnings. The highest EPS estimate is $0.38 and the lowest is $0.27. Southern reported earnings per share of $0.47 in the same quarter last year, which would suggest a negative year-over-year growth rate of 29.8%. The business is expected to announce its next earnings results on Thursday, February 17th.

On average, analysts expect that Southern will report full year earnings of $3.37 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.33 to $3.42. For the next financial year, analysts anticipate that the company will report earnings of $3.53 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.48 to $3.61. Zacks’ EPS calculations are an average based on a survey of analysts that follow Southern.

Southern (NYSE:SO) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, November 4th. The utilities provider reported $1.23 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.22 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $6.24 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $6.15 billion. Southern had a net margin of 13.40% and a return on equity of 11.38%. Southern’s quarterly revenue was up 11.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm posted $1.22 earnings per share.

A number of brokerages recently weighed in on SO. Wells Fargo & Company reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Southern in a research note on Monday, August 2nd. Guggenheim raised shares of Southern from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, September 7th. KeyCorp lifted their price target on shares of Southern from $68.00 to $69.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 19th. Mizuho decreased their price target on shares of Southern from $60.00 to $55.00 and set an “underperform” rating on the stock in a research note on Monday, October 4th. Finally, Morgan Stanley decreased their price target on shares of Southern from $64.00 to $63.00 and set an “underweight” rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, September 17th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the stock. According to MarketBeat, the company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $68.42.

SO traded up $0.09 on Thursday, reaching $63.10. The company had a trading volume of 2,793,820 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,957,487. The business has a 50 day simple moving average of $62.83 and a 200 day simple moving average of $63.69. The company has a market cap of $66.87 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.30, a P/E/G ratio of 3.79 and a beta of 0.46. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.47, a quick ratio of 0.69 and a current ratio of 0.86. Southern has a 52-week low of $56.69 and a 52-week high of $67.54.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, December 6th. Stockholders of record on Monday, November 15th will be issued a $0.66 dividend. This represents a $2.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.18%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, November 12th. Southern’s dividend payout ratio is 93.29%.

In related news, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 2,500 shares of Southern stock in a transaction on Friday, October 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.65, for a total value of $156,625.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, EVP Bryan D. Anderson sold 22,510 shares of Southern stock in a transaction on Tuesday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $66.87, for a total transaction of $1,505,243.70. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 85,847 shares of company stock worth $5,711,926 in the last 90 days. Company insiders own 0.43% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its position in Southern by 0.5% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 90,175,199 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $5,456,502,000 after buying an additional 471,093 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. lifted its position in Southern by 4.3% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 75,047,966 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $4,541,152,000 after buying an additional 3,064,645 shares during the period. Franklin Resources Inc. lifted its position in Southern by 4.1% during the third quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 29,764,010 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,844,476,000 after buying an additional 1,182,130 shares during the period. FMR LLC lifted its position in Southern by 7.7% during the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 22,647,246 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,370,384,000 after buying an additional 1,626,550 shares during the period. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Southern by 1.2% during the third quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 16,083,865 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $994,383,000 after buying an additional 194,848 shares during the period. 59.23% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Southern Company Profile

The Southern Co is a holding company. The firm engages in the sale of electricity. It operates through the following segments: Traditional Electric Operating Companies, Southern Power and Southern Company Gas. The Traditional Electric Operating Companies segment refers to vertically integrated utilities that own generation, transmission and distribution facilities, and supplies electric services in the states of Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and Mississippi.

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Earnings History and Estimates for Southern (NYSE:SO)

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