NorthWestern Co. (NWE) Given Consensus Rating of “Sell” by Analysts

NorthWestern Co. (NYSE:NWE) has received a consensus rating of “Sell” from the eight analysts that are presently covering the company, Marketbeat reports. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation and three have assigned a hold recommendation to the company. The average 12 month price target among brokerages that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $54.75.

Several research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. ValuEngine cut shares of NorthWestern from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 9th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of NorthWestern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 18th. Finally, Wells Fargo set a $55.00 price objective on shares of NorthWestern and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 14th.

In other NorthWestern news, Director Jan Robert Horsfall sold 1,800 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $57.38, for a total transaction of $103,284.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 5,155 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $295,793.90. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, CEO Robert C. Rowe sold 8,826 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.92, for a total transaction of $484,723.92. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 11,626 shares of company stock valued at $638,958. 1.40% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased its holdings in NorthWestern by 4.6% during the first quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 2,760,817 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $148,533,000 after buying an additional 122,240 shares during the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. increased its holdings in NorthWestern by 9.9% during the first quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 2,544,356 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $136,886,000 after buying an additional 230,085 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp increased its holdings in NorthWestern by 6.4% during the first quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 1,465,912 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $78,866,000 after buying an additional 88,251 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its holdings in NorthWestern by 1.4% during the first quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,012,848 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $54,491,000 after buying an additional 14,099 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Macquarie Group Ltd. increased its holdings in NorthWestern by 9.8% during the fourth quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 968,078 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $57,159,000 after buying an additional 86,652 shares during the last quarter. 95.83% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of NorthWestern traded up $0.11, hitting $53.26, during mid-day trading on Friday, according to Marketbeat. 415,500 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 470,509. The company has a quick ratio of 0.66, a current ratio of 0.79 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.11. NorthWestern has a 1 year low of $52.92 and a 1 year high of $53.51. The stock has a market capitalization of $2.65 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.18, a PEG ratio of 6.49 and a beta of 0.21.

NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE) last released its quarterly earnings data on Monday, February 12th. The utilities provider reported $0.98 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.02 by ($0.04). NorthWestern had a net margin of 12.86% and a return on equity of 9.38%. The company had revenue of $344.55 million for the quarter. analysts expect that NorthWestern will post 3.42 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 29th. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 15th will be issued a dividend of $0.55 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, June 14th. This represents a $2.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.13%. NorthWestern’s dividend payout ratio is currently 66.67%.

About NorthWestern

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.

Analyst Recommendations for NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE)

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