NiSource (NYSE:NI) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Monday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “In the first quarter, NiSource delivered better-than-expected results, courtesy of consistent execution of long-term utility infrastructure modernization programs. NiSource's shares have outperformed the industry in the past 12 months. The company has made considerable progress on regulatory initiatives across different states it operates in. The company has a 100% regulated utility business model. Its planned regulated investments will improve reliability as well as safety and provide efficient natural gas services to an increasing customer base. Despite investments to upgrade programs, NiSource's ageing infrastructure could cause disruption in operation. Rising debt level is another headwind for the company. There is always an inherent risk associated with the timely completion of projects and within budget. Any delay in completion increases capital costs of these projects.”

Other research analysts have also issued research reports about the stock. TheStreet upgraded shares of NiSource from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research report on Monday, May 13th. Goldman Sachs Group upgraded shares of NiSource from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $26.00 to $29.00 in a research report on Monday, April 8th. ValuEngine lowered shares of NiSource from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 16th. Bank of America lowered shares of NiSource from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $27.37 price target on the stock. in a research report on Monday, April 22nd. Finally, KeyCorp restated a “buy” rating and issued a $28.50 price target on shares of NiSource in a research report on Tuesday, February 5th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $27.87.

NiSource stock traded down $0.03 during mid-day trading on Monday, hitting $28.26. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 72,963 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,896,482. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.45, a quick ratio of 0.42 and a current ratio of 0.48. The firm has a market cap of $10.56 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.71, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.68 and a beta of 0.26. NiSource has a twelve month low of $23.23 and a twelve month high of $28.85.

NiSource (NYSE:NI) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.82 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.77 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $1.86 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.84 billion. NiSource had a negative net margin of 2.06% and a positive return on equity of 10.76%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.77 earnings per share. As a group, equities analysts predict that NiSource will post 1.3 EPS for the current fiscal year.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Cedar Wealth Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of NiSource during the 4th quarter valued at $25,000. Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC boosted its stake in shares of NiSource by 173.5% during the 4th quarter. Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC now owns 1,031 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $26,000 after buying an additional 654 shares during the period. Pearl River Capital LLC acquired a new stake in shares of NiSource during the 4th quarter valued at $35,000. Lindbrook Capital LLC acquired a new stake in shares of NiSource during the 4th quarter valued at $38,000. Finally, Harvest Group Wealth Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of NiSource during the 1st quarter valued at $52,000. 94.09% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About NiSource

NiSource Inc, an energy holding company, operates as a regulated natural gas and electric utility company in the United States. The company operates in two segments, Gas Distribution Operations and Electric Operations. It provides natural gas service and transportation for residential, commercial, and industrial customers; generates, transmits, and distributes electricity; and wholesale and transmission transaction services.

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