Fortis Inc. (NYSE:FTS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Fortis, Inc. is engaged in electric and gas utility business. The Company offers regulated utilities comprised of electric and gas as well as engages in non-regulated hydroelectric operations. It operates primarily in Canada, United States and Caribbean. Fortis, Inc. is based in St John’s, Canada. “

Several other research analysts have also weighed in on the company. TheStreet upgraded Fortis from a “d” rating to a “c” rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 22nd. Barclays PLC reiterated an “overweight” rating and issued a $37.00 price objective on shares of Fortis in a research report on Tuesday, March 28th. Raymond James Financial, Inc. lowered Fortis from an “outperform” rating to a “mkt perform” rating in a research report on Tuesday, January 17th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. started coverage on Fortis in a research report on Monday, February 27th. They issued a “neutral” rating for the company. Finally, CIBC upgraded Fortis from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, February 16th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. Fortis has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $37.50.

Shares of Fortis (NYSE:FTS) traded down 2.07% on Tuesday, hitting $33.10. The stock had a trading volume of 275,619 shares. The firm has a market cap of $13.29 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.51. Fortis has a 12-month low of $29.14 and a 12-month high of $34.66. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $32.44 and a 200 day moving average of $31.61.

Fortis (NYSE:FTS) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 16th. The utilities provider reported $0.48 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.36 by $0.12. The company earned $2.05 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.05 billion. Fortis had a return on equity of 7.17% and a net margin of 8.22%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 19.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.51 earnings per share.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, May 19th will be paid a dividend of $0.3058 per share. This represents a $1.22 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.69%. This is a boost from Fortis’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.30. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, May 17th. Fortis’s dividend payout ratio is 84.40%.

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Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Gulf International Bank UK Ltd boosted its position in Fortis by 1.1% in the first quarter. Gulf International Bank UK Ltd now owns 123,208 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $4,077,000 after buying an additional 1,400 shares during the period. Affinity Wealth Management bought a new position in Fortis during the first quarter worth approximately $210,000. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. boosted its position in Fortis by 20.0% in the first quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. now owns 50,642 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,679,000 after buying an additional 8,439 shares during the period. Cardinal Capital Management Inc. bought a new position in Fortis during the first quarter worth approximately $302,000. Finally, Keybank National Association OH bought a new position in Fortis during the fourth quarter worth approximately $328,000. Institutional investors own 12.08% of the company’s stock.

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