HL Financial Services LLC reduced its position in Southern Co. (NYSE:SO) by 4.8% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 272,602 shares of the company’s stock after selling 13,692 shares during the period. HL Financial Services LLC’s holdings in Southern were worth $14,620,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in the company. NewSquare Capital LLC increased its position in Southern by 23.1% in the second quarter. NewSquare Capital LLC now owns 14,644 shares of the company’s stock worth $785,000 after buying an additional 2,745 shares in the last quarter. Atalanta Sosnoff Capital LLC increased its position in Southern by 3,155.2% in the second quarter. Atalanta Sosnoff Capital LLC now owns 394,526 shares of the company’s stock worth $21,159,000 after buying an additional 382,406 shares in the last quarter. Investment House LLC increased its position in Southern by 1.0% in the second quarter. Investment House LLC now owns 5,562 shares of the company’s stock worth $298,000 after buying an additional 56 shares in the last quarter. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group increased its position in Southern by 46.9% in the second quarter. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group now owns 18,697 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,003,000 after buying an additional 5,973 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Louisiana State Employees Retirement System increased its position in Southern by 0.8% in the second quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 61,600 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,304,000 after buying an additional 500 shares in the last quarter. 48.64% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Southern Co. (NYSE:SO) traded up 0.56% on Thursday, hitting $53.48. 4,134,084 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The firm has a market cap of $50.36 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.23 and a beta of 0.05. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $51.97 and its 200 day moving average is $51.28. Southern Co. has a 12 month low of $43.36 and a 12 month high of $54.64.

Southern (NYSE:SO) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 27th. The company reported $0.74 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.70 by $0.04. The firm earned $4.45 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.54 billion. Southern had a net margin of 13.77% and a return on equity of 12.50%. The business’s revenue was up 2.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.71 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts predict that Southern Co. will post $2.86 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, September 6th. Stockholders of record on Monday, August 15th were issued a dividend of $0.56 per share. This represents a $2.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.19%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, August 11th. Southern’s dividend payout ratio is currently 87.50%.

A number of research firms have recently commented on SO. Jefferies Group restated a “hold” rating on shares of Southern in a research note on Thursday, August 4th. Argus reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Southern in a report on Wednesday, June 15th. SunTrust Banks Inc. dropped their target price on shares of Southern from $52.00 to $51.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, September 12th. Mizuho upped their target price on shares of Southern from $50.00 to $52.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 12th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and issued a $54.00 target price on shares of Southern in a report on Thursday, July 14th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $52.32.

In related news, CEO Mark Lantrip sold 35,884 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.00, for a total transaction of $1,937,736.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 41,934 shares in the company, valued at $2,264,436. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CEO Stan W. Connally sold 14,392 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.75, for a total transaction of $773,570.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 17,716 shares in the company, valued at $952,235. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.00% of the company’s stock.

About Southern

The Southern Company (Southern Company) is a holding company. The Company owns all of the stock of the traditional operating companies and Southern Power Company (Southern Power), and owns other direct and indirect subsidiaries. Southern Company’s segments include the sale of electricity by four traditional operating companies, Southern Power and All Other.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:SO

Want to see what other hedge funds are holding SO? Visit HoldingsChannel.com to get the latest 13F filings and insider trades for Southern Co. (NYSE:SO).

Receive News & Ratings for Southern Co. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Southern Co. and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.