Federated Hermes Inc. reduced its holdings in shares of Southern Co (NYSE:SO) by 2.2% during the 1st quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 5,287,698 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 116,846 shares during the period. Southern makes up 0.8% of Federated Hermes Inc.’s holdings, making the stock its 18th largest position. Federated Hermes Inc. owned approximately 0.50% of Southern worth $286,277,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other large investors have also made changes to their positions in SO. Valley National Advisers Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Southern by 49.0% during the 4th quarter. Valley National Advisers Inc. now owns 447 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $28,000 after acquiring an additional 147 shares in the last quarter. Advisory Alpha LLC boosted its stake in shares of Southern by 1.5% during the 4th quarter. Advisory Alpha LLC now owns 10,145 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $655,000 after acquiring an additional 148 shares in the last quarter. Swaine & Leidel Wealth Services LLC boosted its stake in shares of Southern by 4.3% during the 4th quarter. Swaine & Leidel Wealth Services LLC now owns 3,578 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $228,000 after acquiring an additional 149 shares in the last quarter. Loomis Sayles & Co. L P boosted its stake in shares of Southern by 9.6% during the 4th quarter. Loomis Sayles & Co. L P now owns 1,742 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $111,000 after acquiring an additional 153 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Prio Wealth Limited Partnership boosted its stake in shares of Southern by 2.2% during the 4th quarter. Prio Wealth Limited Partnership now owns 7,084 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $451,000 after acquiring an additional 154 shares in the last quarter. 58.89% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Several research analysts recently issued reports on SO shares. Seaport Global Securities started coverage on Southern in a research report on Wednesday, May 20th. They set a “buy” rating and a $60.00 price objective for the company. ValuEngine downgraded Southern from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Friday, February 28th. Wolfe Research upgraded Southern from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 12th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Southern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $59.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, May 5th. Finally, UBS Group downgraded Southern from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating and lifted their price objective for the stock from $54.00 to $63.00 in a research report on Thursday, May 21st. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Southern currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $61.90.

In related news, Director Ernest J. Moniz bought 3,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, May 4th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $54.72 per share, for a total transaction of $191,520.00. Following the purchase, the director now owns 3,500 shares in the company, valued at approximately $191,520. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, EVP Christopher C. Womack sold 9,843 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, March 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $67.99, for a total transaction of $669,225.57. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 18,146 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,233,746.54. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 13,843 shares of company stock valued at $881,346. 0.39% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Southern stock traded up $0.65 during trading on Wednesday, reaching $58.65. 2,567,713 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 4,981,136. The company’s 50-day moving average is $55.79 and its two-hundred day moving average is $60.86. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.44, a quick ratio of 0.78 and a current ratio of 0.99. Southern Co has a 52-week low of $41.96 and a 52-week high of $71.10. The firm has a market cap of $60.99 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.47, a PEG ratio of 4.57 and a beta of 0.44.

Southern (NYSE:SO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 30th. The utilities provider reported $0.78 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.71 by $0.07. The firm had revenue of $5.02 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.45 billion. Southern had a net margin of 16.83% and a return on equity of 10.57%. The firm’s revenue was down 7.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.70 EPS. Analysts anticipate that Southern Co will post 3.16 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 8th. Shareholders of record on Monday, May 18th will be given a $0.64 dividend. This is a boost from Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.62. This represents a $2.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.36%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, May 15th. Southern’s dividend payout ratio is presently 82.32%.

Southern Profile

The Southern Company, through its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity. It operates in four segments: Gas Distribution Operations, Gas Pipeline Investments, Wholesale Gas Services, and Gas Marketing Services. The company also constructs, acquires, owns, and manages power generation assets, including renewable energy facilities 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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