Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY increased its stake in NorthWestern Corp (NYSE:NWE) by 72.0% during the 4th quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 28,945 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after purchasing an additional 12,114 shares during the quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY owned 0.06% of NorthWestern worth $1,720,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of NWE. Parallel Advisors LLC boosted its holdings in NorthWestern by 41.3% in the fourth quarter. Parallel Advisors LLC now owns 571 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $33,000 after purchasing an additional 167 shares during the last quarter. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. purchased a new stake in NorthWestern in the fourth quarter worth approximately $66,000. Honkamp Krueger Financial Services Inc. purchased a new stake in NorthWestern in the third quarter worth approximately $124,000. Ffcm LLC boosted its holdings in NorthWestern by 130.8% in the fourth quarter. Ffcm LLC now owns 2,428 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $144,000 after purchasing an additional 1,376 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Resources Investment Advisors Inc. boosted its holdings in NorthWestern by 60.0% in the fourth quarter. Resources Investment Advisors Inc. now owns 2,634 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $157,000 after purchasing an additional 988 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 97.75% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NorthWestern stock opened at $71.30 on Wednesday. The firm has a market cap of $3.59 billion, a PE ratio of 21.03, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 8.62 and a beta of 0.34. NorthWestern Corp has a 1-year low of $51.53 and a 1-year high of $71.77. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.09, a quick ratio of 0.65 and a current ratio of 0.80.

NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE) last released its earnings results on Monday, February 11th. The utilities provider reported $1.07 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.96 by $0.11. NorthWestern had a net margin of 16.52% and a return on equity of 9.80%. The company had revenue of $308.82 million for the quarter. As a group, equities analysts expect that NorthWestern Corp will post 3.37 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 29th. Investors of record on Friday, March 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.575 per share. This is a boost from NorthWestern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.55. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 14th. This represents a $2.30 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.23%. NorthWestern’s payout ratio is 67.85%.

In related news, Director Jan Robert Horsfall sold 2,300 shares of NorthWestern stock in a transaction on Monday, February 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $67.34, for a total transaction of $154,882.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 3,905 shares in the company, valued at approximately $262,962.70. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, VP Michael R. Cashell sold 1,656 shares of NorthWestern stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $67.85, for a total transaction of $112,359.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 6,156 shares of company stock worth $411,430. 1.17% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

NWE has been the topic of several analyst reports. Barclays cut shares of NorthWestern from an “equal weight” rating to an “underweight” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $62.00 to $65.00 in a research note on Wednesday, March 20th. Williams Capital reiterated a “sell” rating on shares of NorthWestern in a research note on Monday, March 18th. Bank of America reiterated an “underperform” rating and set a $55.00 price target on shares of NorthWestern in a research note on Thursday, March 14th. Credit Suisse Group dropped their price target on shares of NorthWestern from $60.00 to $56.00 and set an “underperform” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, February 13th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut shares of NorthWestern from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 25th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, one has given a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. NorthWestern has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $61.83.

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NorthWestern Profile

NorthWestern Corporation, doing business as NorthWestern Energy, provides electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, and industrial customers. The company operates through Electric Operations and Natural Gas Operations segments. It generates, transmits, and distributes electricity; and produces, stores, transmits, and distributes natural gas, as well as owns municipal franchises to provide natural gas service in the communities.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE)

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