SRS Capital Advisors Inc. cut its stake in Southern Company (The) (NYSE:SO) by 23.8% during the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 4,737 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 1,482 shares during the period. SRS Capital Advisors Inc.’s holdings in Southern Company (The) were worth $235,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of the company. Macquarie Group Ltd. increased its position in shares of Southern Company (The) by 0.6% in the fourth quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 312,800 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $15,387,000 after buying an additional 1,900 shares in the last quarter. Forte Capital LLC ADV increased its position in shares of Southern Company (The) by 5.9% in the first quarter. Forte Capital LLC ADV now owns 11,785 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $587,000 after buying an additional 655 shares in the last quarter. Sheets Smith Wealth Management increased its position in shares of Southern Company (The) by 1.1% in the first quarter. Sheets Smith Wealth Management now owns 11,650 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $580,000 after buying an additional 128 shares in the last quarter. Chesley Taft & Associates LLC increased its position in shares of Southern Company (The) by 6.8% in the first quarter. Chesley Taft & Associates LLC now owns 10,940 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $545,000 after buying an additional 700 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Gulf International Bank UK Ltd increased its stake in shares of Southern Company (The) by 1.2% in the first quarter. Gulf International Bank UK Ltd now owns 305,652 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $15,215,000 after buying an additional 3,700 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 53.57% of the company’s stock.

Southern Company (NYSE:SO) traded down 0.519% during trading on Wednesday, hitting $48.865. The stock had a trading volume of 933,637 shares. Southern Company has a 12 month low of $46.20 and a 12 month high of $53.73. The stock has a market cap of $48.84 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 80.370 and a beta of 0.12. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $48.43 and a 200-day moving average price of $49.48.

Southern Company (The) (NYSE:SO) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 2nd. The utilities provider reported $0.73 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.71 by $0.02. Southern Company (The) had a return on equity of 11.30% and a net margin of 2.93%. The firm had revenue of $5.43 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.23 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.74 EPS. Southern Company (The)’s quarterly revenue was up 21.7% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts predict that Southern Company will post $2.95 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, September 6th. Investors of record on Monday, August 21st will be paid a dividend of $0.58 per share. This represents a $2.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.72%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, August 17th. Southern Company (The)’s dividend payout ratio is currently 346.27%.

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A number of brokerages have recently issued reports on SO. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Southern Company (The) from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Friday, June 16th. Morgan Stanley dropped their price target on Southern Company (The) from $53.00 to $51.00 and set an “underweight” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, June 23rd. Barclays PLC reiterated an “overweight” rating and set a $56.00 price target (up previously from $53.00) on shares of Southern Company (The) in a research report on Sunday, April 23rd. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $55.00 price target on shares of Southern Company (The) in a research report on Monday, May 15th. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded Southern Company (The) from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report on Saturday, June 24th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company. Southern Company (The) currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $48.87.

In other Southern Company (The) news, insider Ann P. Daiss sold 5,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, June 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.28, for a total transaction of $256,400.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 7,394 shares in the company, valued at approximately $379,164.32. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CEO Mark Lantrip sold 25,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, June 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.50, for a total value of $1,287,500.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 31,080 shares in the company, valued at $1,600,620. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 152,084 shares of company stock valued at $7,665,158 over the last three months. 0.74% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

About Southern Company (The)

The Southern Company (Southern Company) is a holding company. The Company owns all of the stock of the traditional electric operating companies and the parent entities of Southern Power Company (Southern Power) and Southern Company Gas, and owns other direct and indirect subsidiaries. The Company’s segments include Gas distribution operations, Gas marketing services, Wholesale gas services, Gas midstream operations and All other.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Southern Company (The) (NYSE:SO)

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