Northcoast Research began coverage on shares of Aqua America Inc (NYSE:WTR) in a research report sent to investors on Thursday. The brokerage issued a neutral rating on the utilities provider’s stock.

A number of other research analysts also recently weighed in on the company. Boenning Scattergood raised Aqua America from a neutral rating to an outperform rating in a research note on Monday, March 13th. Barclays PLC raised Aqua America from an equal weight rating to an overweight rating and upped their price target for the stock from $33.00 to $36.00 in a research note on Friday, March 17th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Aqua America from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 18th. Finally, Robert W. Baird reaffirmed a neutral rating and set a $32.00 price target on shares of Aqua America in a research note on Thursday, February 23rd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $32.25.

Analyst Recommendations for Aqua America (NYSE:WTR)

Shares of Aqua America (NYSE WTR) opened at 32.56 on Thursday. Aqua America has a 12 month low of $28.03 and a 12 month high of $35.83. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $32.43 and a 200-day moving average price of $31.05. The firm has a market cap of $5.78 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.95 and a beta of 0.46.

Aqua America (NYSE:WTR) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 3rd. The utilities provider reported $0.28 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.30 by $0.02. Aqua America had a return on equity of 13.19% and a net margin of 25.97%. The firm had revenue of $187.79 million for the quarter. Analysts forecast that Aqua America will post $1.36 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 1st. Investors of record on Wednesday, May 17th will be paid a dividend of $0.1913 per share. This represents a $0.77 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.35%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, May 15th. Aqua America’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 64.71%.

Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. increased its stake in shares of Aqua America by 4.2% in the first quarter. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. now owns 3,301 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $106,000 after buying an additional 132 shares during the period. IFP Advisors Inc increased its stake in shares of Aqua America by 1.4% in the first quarter. IFP Advisors Inc now owns 3,892 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $125,000 after buying an additional 53 shares during the period. Tuttle Tactical Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Aqua America by 0.6% in the third quarter. Tuttle Tactical Management LLC now owns 5,772 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $176,000 after buying an additional 36 shares during the period. Pacad Investment Ltd. bought a new stake in shares of Aqua America during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $183,000. Finally, National Asset Management Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Aqua America during the first quarter valued at approximately $202,000. 48.08% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Aqua America Company Profile

Aqua America, Inc is a holding company. The Company is engaged in providing water or wastewater services concentrated in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Texas, Illinois, North Carolina, New Jersey, Indiana and Virginia. The Company is the holding company for its primary subsidiary, Aqua Pennsylvania, Inc Its market-based activities are conducted through Aqua Resources, Inc (Aqua Resources) and Aqua Infrastructure, LLC (Aqua Infrastructure).

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