Chesapeake Utilities (NYSE:CPK) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Wednesday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Chesapeake Utilities Corporation is a utility company engaged in natural gas distribution and transmission, propane distribution and marketing, advanced information services and other related businesses.Chesapeake’s three natural gas distribution divisions serve residential, commercial and industrial customers in southern Delaware, Maryland’s Eastern Shore and Florida. The Company’s natural gas transmission subsidiary operates an interstate pipeline system that transports gas from various points in Pennsylvania to Delaware and Maryland distribution divisions. “

CPK has been the topic of a number of other reports. Wells Fargo & Co reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Chesapeake Utilities in a research note on Friday, May 10th. Maxim Group set a $100.00 target price on shares of Chesapeake Utilities and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 8th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $97.31.

CPK stock traded down $0.47 during trading on Wednesday, hitting $93.38. The stock had a trading volume of 46,400 shares, compared to its average volume of 52,047. The company has a current ratio of 0.30, a quick ratio of 0.27 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.55. Chesapeake Utilities has a twelve month low of $73.55 and a twelve month high of $95.60. The stock has a market cap of $1.56 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.21, a PEG ratio of 4.27 and a beta of 0.25.

Chesapeake Utilities (NYSE:CPK) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 8th. The utilities provider reported $1.68 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.60 by $0.08. Chesapeake Utilities had a return on equity of 11.41% and a net margin of 8.27%. The company had revenue of $227.62 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $271.10 million. As a group, equities analysts forecast that Chesapeake Utilities will post 3.72 EPS for the current fiscal year.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in CPK. Teachers Advisors LLC lifted its stake in Chesapeake Utilities by 3.2% in the 3rd quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 32,208 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $2,702,000 after purchasing an additional 988 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Chesapeake Utilities by 3.8% during the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 929,001 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $77,943,000 after buying an additional 34,124 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc raised its position in shares of Chesapeake Utilities by 3.8% during the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 929,001 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $77,943,000 after buying an additional 34,124 shares during the period. Strategic Wealth Management Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Chesapeake Utilities during the 4th quarter valued at approximately $334,000. Finally, Fruth Investment Management raised its position in shares of Chesapeake Utilities by 1.0% during the 4th quarter. Fruth Investment Management now owns 24,351 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $1,979,000 after buying an additional 250 shares during the period. 64.62% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Chesapeake Utilities

Chesapeake Utilities Corporation, a diversified energy company, engages in regulated and unregulated energy businesses. The company operates in two segments, Regulated Energy and Unregulated Energy. The Regulated Energy segment engages in the distribution of natural gas in Delaware, Maryland, and Florida; distribution of electricity in Florida; and transmission of natural gas on the Delmarva Peninsula and in Florida.

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