BidaskClub upgraded shares of Middlesex Water (NASDAQ:MSEX) from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a research report report published on Friday morning.

Separately, Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Middlesex Water from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $45.00 target price for the company in a report on Wednesday, January 3rd.

Shares of Middlesex Water (NASDAQ MSEX) traded up $0.85 during trading on Friday, hitting $37.06. 75,765 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 82,729. Middlesex Water has a fifty-two week low of $32.23 and a fifty-two week high of $46.74. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.60, a quick ratio of 0.43 and a current ratio of 0.51. The firm has a market cap of $591.89, a PE ratio of 29.65 and a beta of 0.40.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 1st. Stockholders of record on Thursday, February 15th will be issued a $0.2238 dividend. This represents a $0.90 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.42%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, February 14th. Middlesex Water’s payout ratio is 71.20%.

In related news, VP A Bruce Oconnor sold 4,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $43.83, for a total transaction of $175,320.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 16,803 shares in the company, valued at approximately $736,475.49. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP Bernadette M. Sohler sold 1,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, November 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $45.19, for a total transaction of $45,190.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 3.48% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of MSEX. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. boosted its stake in Middlesex Water by 0.9% during the 2nd quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 74,346 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $2,945,000 after purchasing an additional 655 shares during the period. Legal & General Group Plc boosted its stake in Middlesex Water by 4.1% during the 2nd quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 4,101 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $162,000 after purchasing an additional 161 shares during the period. Wells Fargo & Company MN boosted its stake in Middlesex Water by 2.6% during the 2nd quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 24,263 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $961,000 after purchasing an additional 612 shares during the period. Teachers Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Middlesex Water by 7.3% during the 2nd quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 28,109 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,113,000 after purchasing an additional 1,912 shares during the period. Finally, TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in Middlesex Water by 1.4% during the 2nd quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 68,804 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $2,725,000 after purchasing an additional 922 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 49.95% of the company’s stock.

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About Middlesex Water

Middlesex Water Company is a water utility company. The Company owns and operates regulated water utility and wastewater systems in New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania. The Company also operates water and wastewater systems under contract on behalf of municipal and private clients in New Jersey and Delaware.

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