Black Hills (NYSE:BKH) Upgraded at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Black Hills (NYSE:BKH) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Thursday morning, Zacks.com reports. Zacks Investment Research currently has $85.00 price objective on the utilities provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Black Hills Corporation is an energy company that generates wholesale electricity and produces natural gas, crude oil and coal. They serve natural gas and electric utility customers in Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming. “

A number of other research analysts have also commented on BKH. Bank of America upgraded shares of Black Hills from a neutral rating to a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, October 10th. Wells Fargo & Co decreased their price target on shares of Black Hills from $80.00 to $78.00 and set a market perform rating on the stock in a research report on Wednesday. ValuEngine lowered shares of Black Hills from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 2nd. Finally, Credit Suisse Group decreased their price target on shares of Black Hills from $79.00 to $78.00 and set a neutral rating on the stock in a research report on Friday, August 9th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the stock. Black Hills currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $74.00.

Shares of NYSE BKH traded down $0.01 during mid-day trading on Thursday, reaching $75.09. 266,569 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 371,542. Black Hills has a fifty-two week low of $59.49 and a fifty-two week high of $82.01. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.26, a current ratio of 0.76 and a quick ratio of 0.55. The firm has a market cap of $4.58 billion, a PE ratio of 21.21, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 5.16 and a beta of 0.24. The stock has a fifty day simple moving average of $77.34 and a 200-day simple moving average of $77.18.

Black Hills (NYSE:BKH) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, November 4th. The utilities provider reported $0.44 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.45 by ($0.01). Black Hills had a net margin of 12.32% and a return on equity of 8.73%. The company had revenue of $325.50 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $385.42 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.42 EPS. Black Hills’s revenue was up 1.1% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, analysts predict that Black Hills will post 3.45 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Sunday, December 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, November 18th will be given a $0.535 dividend. This is a positive change from Black Hills’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.51. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, November 15th. This represents a $2.14 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.85%. Black Hills’s payout ratio is 57.06%.

In related news, insider Shonn D. Stahlecker sold 10,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $7.35, for a total value of $73,500.00. Also, Chairman David R. Emery sold 7,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $78.61, for a total transaction of $589,575.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 145,306 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $11,422,504.66. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 32,500 shares of company stock worth $1,821,375. 1.00% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of BKH. Point72 Asset Management L.P. acquired a new position in Black Hills in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $55,000. CWM LLC boosted its stake in Black Hills by 130.0% in the 3rd quarter. CWM LLC now owns 729 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $56,000 after purchasing an additional 412 shares during the period. North Star Investment Management Corp. acquired a new stake in shares of Black Hills during the 3rd quarter valued at $58,000. Krane Funds Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Black Hills during the 2nd quarter valued at $59,000. Finally, Stonebridge Capital Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Black Hills during the 2nd quarter valued at $94,000. 87.79% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Black Hills

Black Hills Corporation, through its subsidiaries, operates as an electric and natural gas utility company in the United States. It operates through Electric Utilities, Gas Utilities, Power Generation, and Mining segments. The Electric Utilities segment generates, transmits, and distributes electricity to approximately 212,000 electric customers in Colorado, Montana, South Dakota, and Wyoming, as well as provides electrical system construction services to large industrial customers.

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