NEXT Financial Group Inc grew its holdings in shares of Unitil Co. (NYSE:UTL) by 21.8% in the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 60,874 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after buying an additional 10,878 shares during the quarter. Unitil accounts for about 0.9% of NEXT Financial Group Inc’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 16th largest holding. NEXT Financial Group Inc owned about 0.43% of Unitil worth $3,164,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Several other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in UTL. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA lifted its stake in Unitil by 293.5% during the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 2,349 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $113,000 after purchasing an additional 1,752 shares during the last quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC bought a new position in Unitil during the third quarter worth $132,000. Thrivent Financial For Lutherans bought a new position in Unitil during the second quarter worth $254,000. Schroder Investment Management Group lifted its stake in Unitil by 23.2% during the second quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 6,048 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $292,000 after purchasing an additional 1,140 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Strs Ohio lifted its stake in Unitil by 6.8% during the second quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 6,300 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $304,000 after purchasing an additional 400 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 59.79% of the company’s stock.
Several equities analysts recently issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Unitil from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, September 6th. Royal Bank Of Canada restated a “hold” rating and set a $47.00 price objective on shares of Unitil in a research note on Monday, September 18th. Finally, BidaskClub upgraded Unitil from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 10th.
Unitil (NYSE:UTL) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The utilities provider reported $0.16 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.12 by $0.04. Unitil had a return on equity of 3.08% and a net margin of 2.74%. The firm had revenue of $475.20 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $82.80 million. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.25 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.4% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts predict that Unitil Co. will post 2.03 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, November 29th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, November 15th will be given a $0.36 dividend. This represents a $1.44 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.90%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, November 14th. Unitil’s dividend payout ratio is presently 72.00%.
Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company. The Company’s principal business is the local distribution of electricity in the southeastern seacoast and state capital regions of New Hampshire and the greater Fitchburg area of north central Massachusetts and the local distribution of natural gas in southeastern New Hampshire, portions of southern Maine to the Lewiston-Auburn area and in the greater Fitchburg area of north central Massachusetts.
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