Westar Energy Inc (NYSE:WR) announced a quarterly dividend on Wednesday, November 22nd, RTT News reports. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 8th will be paid a dividend of 0.40 per share by the utilities provider on Tuesday, January 2nd. This represents a $1.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.81%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, December 7th.

Westar Energy has raised its dividend payment by an average of 3.6% per year over the last three years and has increased its dividend annually for the last 11 consecutive years. Westar Energy has a dividend payout ratio of 65.3% meaning its dividend is sufficiently covered by earnings. Analysts expect Westar Energy to earn $2.50 per share next year, which means the company should continue to be able to cover its $1.60 annual dividend with an expected future payout ratio of 64.0%.

Shares of Westar Energy (NYSE WR) opened at $56.88 on Friday. The stock has a market cap of $8,129.21, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.74, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 6.89 and a beta of 0.42. Westar Energy has a twelve month low of $49.20 and a twelve month high of $57.50. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.97, a current ratio of 1.07 and a quick ratio of 0.65.

Westar Energy (NYSE:WR) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 31st. The utilities provider reported $1.11 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.20 by ($0.09). The firm had revenue of $794.33 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $773.96 million. Westar Energy had a return on equity of 8.94% and a net margin of 13.32%. Westar Energy’s revenue was up 3.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the business earned $1.09 EPS. equities analysts expect that Westar Energy will post 2.45 earnings per share for the current year.

A number of equities research analysts have recently weighed in on WR shares. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Westar Energy from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 30th. BidaskClub raised shares of Westar Energy from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, August 5th. Wells Fargo & Company raised shares of Westar Energy from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $55.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Monday, October 2nd. Bank of America started coverage on shares of Westar Energy in a research note on Tuesday, October 24th. They set a “buy” rating and a $57.00 target price on the stock. Finally, J P Morgan Chase & Co set a $58.00 target price on shares of Westar Energy and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 12th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $55.75.

In related news, CFO Anthony D. Somma sold 3,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.53, for a total transaction of $163,590.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CEO Mark A. Ruelle sold 37,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $54.35, for a total transaction of $2,010,950.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 55,100 shares of company stock worth $2,991,312 in the last ninety days. Insiders own 0.70% of the company’s stock.

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About Westar Energy

Westar Energy, Inc is an electric utility. The Company provides electric generation, transmission and distribution services. The Company provides these services in central and northeastern Kansas, including the cities of Topeka, Lawrence, Manhattan, Salina and Hutchinson. Its subsidiary, Kansas Gas and Electric Company (KGE), provides these services in south-central and southeastern Kansas, including the city of Wichita.

Dividend History for Westar Energy (NYSE:WR)

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