Zacks: Analysts Anticipate NorthWestern Corp (NWE) to Announce $0.68 EPS

Wall Street brokerages expect NorthWestern Corp (NYSE:NWE) to post earnings per share (EPS) of $0.68 for the current quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Zero analysts have issued estimates for NorthWestern’s earnings. The lowest EPS estimate is $0.62 and the highest is $0.73. NorthWestern posted earnings of $0.75 per share in the same quarter last year, which would suggest a negative year over year growth rate of 9.3%. The company is expected to report its next earnings report after the market closes on Tuesday, October 23rd.

On average, analysts expect that NorthWestern will report full-year earnings of $3.45 per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.41 to $3.48. For the next financial year, analysts forecast that the business will report earnings of $3.43 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.40 to $3.45. Zacks’ earnings per share averages are a mean average based on a survey of analysts that cover NorthWestern.

NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, July 19th. The utilities provider reported $0.87 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.44 by $0.43. The business had revenue of $261.82 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $286.14 million. NorthWestern had a net margin of 14.84% and a return on equity of 10.28%. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 7.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.47 earnings per share.

NWE has been the topic of several analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of NorthWestern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, September 20th. Barclays assumed coverage on shares of NorthWestern in a report on Tuesday, July 10th. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $60.00 price objective on the stock. Credit Suisse Group boosted their price objective on shares of NorthWestern from $55.00 to $56.00 and gave the stock an “underperform” rating in a report on Monday, October 1st. Wells Fargo & Co boosted their price objective on shares of NorthWestern from $59.00 to $61.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a report on Monday, September 17th. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of NorthWestern from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, July 2nd. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $59.60.

In related news, VP Curtis T. Pohl sold 1,200 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.73, for a total transaction of $70,476.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. 1.40% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in NWE. Arizona State Retirement System lifted its holdings in shares of NorthWestern by 2.9% in the second quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 34,349 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,966,000 after purchasing an additional 971 shares in the last quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund lifted its holdings in shares of NorthWestern by 5.6% in the second quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 19,189 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,099,000 after purchasing an additional 1,012 shares in the last quarter. Cornercap Investment Counsel Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of NorthWestern by 4.5% in the first quarter. Cornercap Investment Counsel Inc. now owns 28,990 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,560,000 after purchasing an additional 1,245 shares in the last quarter. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of NorthWestern by 1.2% in the second quarter. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC now owns 112,176 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $6,422,000 after purchasing an additional 1,277 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bessemer Group Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of NorthWestern by 3.6% in the second quarter. Bessemer Group Inc. now owns 37,900 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $2,170,000 after purchasing an additional 1,300 shares in the last quarter. 95.31% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of NYSE:NWE traded down $0.88 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $58.68. The stock had a trading volume of 438,796 shares, compared to its average volume of 391,348. The company has a market cap of $2.95 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.78, a PEG ratio of 7.51 and a beta of 0.09. The company has a quick ratio of 0.62, a current ratio of 0.77 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.07. NorthWestern has a 1 year low of $50.01 and a 1 year high of $64.47.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 28th. Investors of record on Friday, September 14th were issued a dividend of $0.55 per share. This represents a $2.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.75%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, September 13th. NorthWestern’s dividend payout ratio is currently 66.67%.

NorthWestern Company Profile

NorthWestern Corporation, doing business as NorthWestern Energy, provides electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, and industrial customers. The company operates through Electric Operations and Natural Gas Operations segments. It generates, transmits, and distributes electricity; and produces, stores, transmits, and distributes natural gas, as well as owns municipal franchises to provide natural gas service in the communities.

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