UNITIL (UTL) Announces Quarterly Earnings Results

UNITIL (NYSE:UTL) released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday. The utilities provider reported $0.79 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.76 by $0.03, Bloomberg Earnings reports. UNITIL had a net margin of 7.14% and a return on equity of 9.67%. The company had revenue of $115.40 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $107.40 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.73 earnings per share.

Shares of UNITIL (UTL) traded down $0.25 on Friday, hitting $43.44. 51,261 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 67,794. UNITIL has a twelve month low of $43.03 and a twelve month high of $52.84. The firm has a market capitalization of $643.65, a P/E ratio of 21.09, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 6.56 and a beta of 0.13. The company has a quick ratio of 0.53, a current ratio of 0.56 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.04.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, February 28th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, February 14th will be paid a $0.365 dividend. This represents a $1.46 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.36%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, February 13th. This is an increase from UNITIL’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.36. UNITIL’s dividend payout ratio is currently 69.90%.

Several equities analysts have issued reports on UTL shares. Janney Montgomery Scott upgraded shares of UNITIL from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and decreased their price objective for the company from $52.00 to $50.00 in a research note on Tuesday, December 26th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of UNITIL from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $58.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. Royal Bank of Canada restated a “hold” rating and issued a $47.00 price objective on shares of UNITIL in a research note on Wednesday, October 18th. Finally, Bank of America started coverage on shares of UNITIL in a research note on Monday, December 18th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $49.00 price objective for the company. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $51.00.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC boosted its stake in shares of UNITIL by 1.8% during the third quarter. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC now owns 951,407 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $47,057,000 after buying an additional 16,392 shares during the period. Strs Ohio boosted its stake in shares of UNITIL by 54.0% during the third quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 9,700 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $479,000 after buying an additional 3,400 shares during the period. Sei Investments Co. boosted its stake in shares of UNITIL by 11.2% during the third quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 28,300 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,400,000 after buying an additional 2,849 shares during the period. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of UNITIL by 15.6% during the third quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 79,630 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $3,939,000 after buying an additional 10,718 shares during the period. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of UNITIL by 0.9% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 784,082 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $37,880,000 after buying an additional 7,281 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 57.49% of the company’s stock.

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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.

Earnings History for UNITIL (NYSE:UTL)

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