Financial Advocates Investment Management Increases Position in The Southern Company (NYSE:SO)

Financial Advocates Investment Management raised its holdings in shares of The Southern Company (NYSE:SOGet Rating) by 13.7% in the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 10,480 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 1,259 shares during the quarter. Financial Advocates Investment Management’s holdings in Southern were worth $748,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Several other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in SO. IndexIQ Advisors LLC acquired a new position in Southern during the first quarter valued at approximately $25,000. Johnson Midwest Financial LLC acquired a new position in shares of Southern during the second quarter valued at $25,000. Crewe Advisors LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Southern by 93.6% during the second quarter. Crewe Advisors LLC now owns 484 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $35,000 after acquiring an additional 234 shares during the period. CNB Bank boosted its holdings in shares of Southern by 186.2% during the second quarter. CNB Bank now owns 498 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $35,000 after acquiring an additional 324 shares during the period. Finally, Hazlett Burt & Watson Inc. acquired a new stake in Southern in the first quarter worth about $54,000. 62.20% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Southern Price Performance

SO stock opened at $66.36 on Thursday. The company has a 50 day simple moving average of $67.65 and a 200 day simple moving average of $72.04. The stock has a market cap of $72.24 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.00, a P/E/G ratio of 4.58 and a beta of 0.51. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.42, a current ratio of 0.81 and a quick ratio of 0.64. The Southern Company has a 1 year low of $60.71 and a 1 year high of $80.57.

Southern Announces Dividend

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, December 6th. Shareholders of record on Monday, November 21st will be given a dividend of $0.68 per share. This represents a $2.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.10%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, November 18th. Southern’s dividend payout ratio is presently 86.08%.

Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth

A number of brokerages have weighed in on SO. Bank Of America (Bofa) downgraded shares of Southern to an “underperform” rating in a report on Monday, October 24th. Wells Fargo & Company dropped their target price on Southern from $72.00 to $70.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, October 19th. UBS Group lowered their price target on Southern to $80.00 in a research note on Monday. Morgan Stanley upped their target price on Southern from $55.00 to $59.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research report on Friday, November 11th. Finally, StockNews.com began coverage on Southern in a research report on Wednesday, October 12th. They issued a “hold” rating for the company. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $71.42.

Insider Transactions at Southern

In other Southern news, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 14,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $64.52, for a total value of $935,540.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 115,284 shares in the company, valued at $7,438,123.68. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. In other Southern news, CEO Stephen E. Kuczynski sold 14,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.52, for a total value of $935,540.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 115,284 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $7,438,123.68. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, EVP Martin Bernard Davis sold 3,050 shares of Southern stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, October 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $65.80, for a total value of $200,690.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 39,916 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,626,472.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 32,050 shares of company stock worth $2,288,545 over the last three months. 0.37% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Southern Profile

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The Southern Company, through its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity. It operates through Gas Distribution Operations, Gas Pipeline Investments, Wholesale Gas Services, and Gas Marketing Services segments. The company also develops, constructs, acquires, owns, and manages power generation assets, including renewable energy projects and sells electricity in the wholesale market; and distributes natural gas in Illinois, Georgia, Virginia, and Tennessee, as well as provides gas marketing services, wholesale gas services, and gas pipeline investments operations.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Southern (NYSE:SO)

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