Atmos Energy Co. (NYSE:ATO) Sees Large Growth in Short Interest

Atmos Energy Co. (NYSE:ATOGet Free Report) was the target of a significant growth in short interest in March. As of March 15th, there was short interest totalling 3,920,000 shares, a growth of 15.6% from the February 29th total of 3,390,000 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 818,600 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 4.8 days.

Insider Activity at Atmos Energy

In other news, Director Kim R. Cocklin sold 15,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, March 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $116.46, for a total transaction of $1,746,900.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 186,339 shares in the company, valued at approximately $21,701,039.94. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 0.50% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge Funds Weigh In On Atmos Energy

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Main Street Group LTD acquired a new stake in shares of Atmos Energy during the 4th quarter worth approximately $27,000. Baker Avenue Asset Management LP boosted its holdings in shares of Atmos Energy by 984.6% in the 3rd quarter. Baker Avenue Asset Management LP now owns 282 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $30,000 after purchasing an additional 256 shares in the last quarter. VisionPoint Advisory Group LLC increased its stake in shares of Atmos Energy by 107.0% in the 3rd quarter. VisionPoint Advisory Group LLC now owns 294 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $31,000 after purchasing an additional 152 shares during the last quarter. RVW Wealth LLC acquired a new position in shares of Atmos Energy during the 3rd quarter worth $32,000. Finally, Global Retirement Partners LLC lifted its position in shares of Atmos Energy by 57.5% during the 4th quarter. Global Retirement Partners LLC now owns 293 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $33,000 after buying an additional 107 shares during the last quarter. 90.17% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Atmos Energy Stock Performance

Shares of Atmos Energy stock traded down $0.08 during trading on Tuesday, reaching $117.77. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 661,212 shares, compared to its average volume of 855,784. The company has a quick ratio of 1.25, a current ratio of 1.44 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.67. The business’s 50-day moving average price is $114.59 and its 200-day moving average price is $113.14. Atmos Energy has a 52 week low of $101.00 and a 52 week high of $125.28. The firm has a market cap of $17.76 billion, a PE ratio of 18.69, a P/E/G ratio of 2.49 and a beta of 0.66.

Atmos Energy (NYSE:ATOGet Free Report) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 7th. The utilities provider reported $2.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $2.09 by ($0.01). The company had revenue of $1.16 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.71 billion. Atmos Energy had a net margin of 23.43% and a return on equity of 8.62%. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.91 earnings per share. Equities analysts forecast that Atmos Energy will post 6.59 earnings per share for the current year.

Atmos Energy Announces Dividend

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, March 11th. Investors of record on Monday, February 26th were given a dividend of $0.805 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, February 23rd. This represents a $3.22 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.73%. Atmos Energy’s dividend payout ratio is 51.11%.

Analyst Ratings Changes

A number of research firms recently weighed in on ATO. StockNews.com cut Atmos Energy from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 28th. Mizuho raised their target price on shares of Atmos Energy from $131.00 to $133.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, December 14th. Finally, Barclays lifted their target price on shares of Atmos Energy from $115.00 to $121.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a report on Thursday, March 14th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, Atmos Energy presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $124.40.

View Our Latest Stock Report on ATO

About Atmos Energy

(Get Free Report)

Atmos Energy Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the regulated natural gas distribution, and pipeline and storage businesses in the United States. It operates through two segments, Distribution, and Pipeline and Storage. The Distribution segment is involved in the regulated natural gas distribution and related sales operations in eight states.

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