NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE) Sets New 1-Year High at $74.55

Shares of NorthWestern Corp (NYSE:NWE) reached a new 52-week high during trading on Thursday . The company traded as high as $74.55 and last traded at $74.50, with a volume of 383728 shares trading hands. The stock had previously closed at $73.71.

A number of analysts have commented on the stock. Williams Capital upgraded shares of NorthWestern from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $66.00 price objective for the company in a report on Monday, August 26th. ValuEngine downgraded shares of NorthWestern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, August 1st. Barclays reiterated a “sell” rating and issued a $70.00 price objective on shares of NorthWestern in a report on Sunday, July 28th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of NorthWestern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 30th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued 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 $65.67.

The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $71.43 and its two-hundred day moving average price is $71.21. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.08, a quick ratio of 0.73 and a current ratio of 0.92. The firm has a market cap of $3.67 billion, a PE ratio of 21.98, a PEG ratio of 8.05 and a beta of 0.22.

NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 23rd. The utilities provider reported $0.94 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.63 by $0.31. NorthWestern had a net margin of 17.30% and a return on equity of 9.86%. The business had revenue of $270.70 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $308.82 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.63 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts forecast that NorthWestern Corp will post 3.42 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, September 30th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 13th will be paid a $0.575 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 12th. This represents a $2.30 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.09%. NorthWestern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 67.85%.

In other news, CEO Robert C. Rowe sold 4,300 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $68.17, for a total value of $293,131.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, VP Bobbi L. Schroeppel sold 570 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.24, for a total transaction of $40,036.80. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 20,816 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,462,115.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 8,470 shares of company stock valued at $589,092. Corporate insiders own 1.17% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Berman Capital Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of NorthWestern by 62.8% during the 1st quarter. Berman Capital Advisors LLC now owns 529 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $37,000 after purchasing an additional 204 shares during the period. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System boosted its position in shares of NorthWestern by 1.3% during the 1st quarter. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System now owns 16,776 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,181,000 after purchasing an additional 211 shares during the period. Quantamental Technologies LLC boosted its position in shares of NorthWestern by 17.9% during the 2nd quarter. Quantamental Technologies LLC now owns 1,974 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $142,000 after purchasing an additional 299 shares during the period. Alpha Windward LLC purchased a new position in shares of NorthWestern during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $25,000. Finally, Tower Research Capital LLC TRC boosted its position in shares of NorthWestern by 13.8% during the 2nd quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 3,039 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $219,000 after purchasing an additional 368 shares during the period. 95.55% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About NorthWestern (NYSE:NWE)

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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