Shares of UNITIL Corporation (NYSE:UTL) have been assigned a consensus broker rating score of 3.00 (Hold) from the one brokers that provide coverage for the stock, Zacks Investment Research reports. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a hold recommendation.

Brokerages have set a twelve-month consensus price objective of $50.00 for the company and are anticipating that the company will post $0.11 earnings per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Zacks has also assigned UNITIL Corporation an industry rank of 94 out of 265 based on the ratings given to related companies.

UTL has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of UNITIL Corporation from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $54.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Tuesday, May 2nd. BidaskClub upgraded shares of UNITIL Corporation from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday.

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UNITIL Corporation (NYSE UTL) traded down 1.76% during trading on Friday, reaching $49.07. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 41,186 shares. The firm has a market cap of $692.67 million, a PE ratio of 24.05 and a beta of 0.21. UNITIL Corporation has a one year low of $37.31 and a one year high of $52.20. The company has a 50-day moving average of $49.67 and a 200 day moving average of $47.07.

UNITIL Corporation (NYSE:UTL) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 27th. The utilities provider reported $0.23 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $80.80 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $78.10 million. UNITIL Corporation had a net margin of 7.52% and a return on equity of 9.88%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.18 earnings per share. Analysts expect that UNITIL Corporation will post $2.00 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, August 29th. Investors of record on Tuesday, August 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.36 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, August 11th. This represents a $1.44 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.93%. UNITIL Corporation’s payout ratio is 68.90%.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of UTL. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its position in UNITIL Corporation by 3.3% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 527,531 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $25,485,000 after buying an additional 16,671 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its position in UNITIL Corporation by 7.6% in the second quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 530,500 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $25,628,000 after buying an additional 37,500 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in UNITIL Corporation by 0.9% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 784,082 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $37,880,000 after buying an additional 7,281 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp boosted its position in UNITIL Corporation by 5.4% in the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 182,584 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $8,820,000 after buying an additional 9,419 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Thrivent Financial For Lutherans bought a new position in UNITIL Corporation during the second quarter valued at $254,000. 58.90% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

UNITIL Corporation Company Profile

Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company. The Company’s principal business is the local distribution of electricity in the southeastern seacoast and state capital regions of New Hampshire and the greater Fitchburg area of north central Massachusetts and the local distribution of natural gas in southeastern New Hampshire, portions of southern Maine to the Lewiston-Auburn area and in the greater Fitchburg area of north central Massachusetts.

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