UNITIL (UTL) Receiving Somewhat Favorable Media Coverage, Report Shows

Media headlines about UNITIL (NYSE:UTL) have trended somewhat positive recently, according to Accern. The research firm identifies negative and positive press coverage by analyzing more than twenty million news and blog sources. Accern ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. UNITIL earned a media sentiment score of 0.14 on Accern’s scale. Accern also gave headlines about the utilities provider an impact score of 45.3370564495772 out of 100, meaning that recent press coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an impact on the stock’s share price in the near future.

Shares of UNITIL (UTL) traded up $0.30 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $43.83. The company had a trading volume of 43,900 shares, compared to its average volume of 83,475. UNITIL has a 12 month low of $43.03 and a 12 month high of $52.84. The stock has a market capitalization of $641.11, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.92, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 5.26 and a beta of 0.20. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.04, a current ratio of 0.56 and a quick ratio of 0.53.

UNITIL (NYSE:UTL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The utilities provider reported $0.16 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.12 by $0.04. UNITIL had a return on equity of 9.39% and a net margin of 7.09%. The company had revenue of $475.20 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $82.80 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.25 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 3.4% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts predict that UNITIL will post 2.03 EPS for the current year.

A number of research firms have recently weighed in on UTL. Zacks Investment Research raised UNITIL from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, September 28th. Janney Montgomery Scott raised UNITIL to a “buy” rating and set a $50.00 price target for the company in a research note on Monday, January 1st. Royal Bank of Canada reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $47.00 price target on shares of UNITIL in a research note on Wednesday, October 18th. Finally, Bank of America initiated coverage on UNITIL in a research note on Monday, December 18th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $49.00 price target for the company. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $51.00.

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UNITIL Company Profile

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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