Short Interest in California Water Service Group (NYSE:CWT) Rises By 8.4%

California Water Service Group (NYSE:CWT) saw a significant growth in short interest during the month of July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 2,081,900 shares, a growth of 8.4% from the June 30th total of 1,920,000 shares. Currently, 4.4% of the shares of the company are short sold. Based on an average daily volume of 256,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 8.1 days.

In other news, Director Peter C. Nelson sold 10,000 shares of California Water Service Group stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $49.10, for a total transaction of $491,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 39,509 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,939,891.90. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, VP Michael B. Luu sold 1,000 shares of California Water Service Group stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $49.23, for a total transaction of $49,230.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 11,919 shares in the company, valued at approximately $586,772.37. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 13,000 shares of company stock worth $642,490 in the last 90 days. 0.99% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of California Water Service Group by 1.0% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 5,655,196 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $286,322,000 after purchasing an additional 56,921 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position in shares of California Water Service Group by 1.0% during the 4th quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,602,002 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $76,351,000 after purchasing an additional 16,628 shares during the period. Nuveen Asset Management LLC raised its position in shares of California Water Service Group by 19.1% during the 2nd quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 818,155 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $41,423,000 after purchasing an additional 131,174 shares during the period. Northern Trust Corp raised its position in shares of California Water Service Group by 0.9% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 805,989 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $40,807,000 after purchasing an additional 6,934 shares during the period. Finally, Atria Investments LLC bought a new stake in shares of California Water Service Group during the 2nd quarter valued at $9,119,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 74.30% of the company’s stock.

Several research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Boenning Scattergood assumed coverage on shares of California Water Service Group in a research note on Monday, June 10th. They set a “neutral” rating on the stock. Wells Fargo & Co reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of California Water Service Group in a research note on Monday, June 10th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $48.50.

Shares of CWT stock traded up $1.43 on Thursday, hitting $55.08. 195,920 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 232,486. The stock has a market cap of $2.60 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 40.50, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 4.01 and a beta of 0.33. California Water Service Group has a 52 week low of $40.10 and a 52 week high of $55.24. The business has a 50 day moving average price of $52.24. The company has a current ratio of 0.62, a quick ratio of 0.60 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.12.

California Water Service Group (NYSE:CWT) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.35 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.37 by ($0.02). The firm had revenue of $179.03 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $180.97 million. California Water Service Group had a net margin of 8.55% and a return on equity of 8.21%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.31 earnings per share. Analysts forecast that California Water Service Group will post 1.35 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, August 23rd. Stockholders of record on Monday, August 12th will be given a dividend of $0.198 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, August 9th. This represents a $0.79 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.44%. California Water Service Group’s payout ratio is 58.09%.

California Water Service Group Company Profile

California Water Service Group, through its subsidiaries, provides water utility and other related services in California, Washington, New Mexico, and Hawaii. It is involved in the production, purchase, storage, treatment, testing, distribution, and sale of water for domestic, industrial, public, and irrigation uses, as well as for fire protection.

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