South Dakota Investment Council Lowers Stock Position in Cabot Oil & Gas Co. (NYSE:COG)

South Dakota Investment Council reduced its stake in shares of Cabot Oil & Gas Co. (NYSE:COG) by 49.4% during the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 4,500 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock after selling 4,400 shares during the period. South Dakota Investment Council’s holdings in Cabot Oil & Gas were worth $103,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of the company. BlackRock Inc. lifted its position in shares of Cabot Oil & Gas by 1.1% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 29,628,467 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $773,304,000 after buying an additional 328,207 shares in the last quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC lifted its position in shares of Cabot Oil & Gas by 10.4% during the 1st quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 14,287,550 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $372,905,000 after buying an additional 1,343,815 shares in the last quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group lifted its position in shares of Cabot Oil & Gas by 34.7% during the 2nd quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 6,738,311 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $154,712,000 after buying an additional 1,737,102 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC lifted its position in shares of Cabot Oil & Gas by 4.4% during the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 5,654,486 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $126,159,000 after buying an additional 237,315 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Northern Trust Corp lifted its position in shares of Cabot Oil & Gas by 6.8% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 5,086,014 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $116,775,000 after buying an additional 325,345 shares in the last quarter. 96.66% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

A number of research analysts have recently weighed in on the company. MKM Partners raised Cabot Oil & Gas from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, July 29th. TD Securities lowered their price target on Cabot Oil & Gas from $29.00 to $27.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, July 29th. Tudor Pickering raised Cabot Oil & Gas from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $25.00 price target on the stock in a report on Friday, August 2nd. Williams Capital reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $22.00 price target on shares of Cabot Oil & Gas in a report on Thursday, August 22nd. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut Cabot Oil & Gas from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, May 20th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company. Cabot Oil & Gas currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $27.39.

In other news, Director Rhys J. Best acquired 7,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 16th. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $16.31 per share, with a total value of $122,325.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Chairman Dan O. Dinges acquired 20,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 19th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $16.34 per share, for a total transaction of $326,800.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the chairman now directly owns 3,104,405 shares in the company, valued at $50,725,977.70. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have bought a total of 53,255 shares of company stock worth $895,416 over the last ninety days. Insiders own 1.90% of the company’s stock.

NYSE COG traded up $0.04 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $18.69. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 182,322 shares, compared to its average volume of 7,154,531. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $17.69 and its 200-day moving average price is $23.28. The company has a quick ratio of 2.61, a current ratio of 2.70 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52. Cabot Oil & Gas Co. has a 1 year low of $16.01 and a 1 year high of $27.65. The company has a market capitalization of $7.78 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.54, a PEG ratio of 0.73 and a beta of 0.53.

Cabot Oil & Gas (NYSE:COG) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 26th. The oil and gas exploration company reported $0.36 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.31 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $534.12 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $476.10 million. Cabot Oil & Gas had a return on equity of 34.79% and a net margin of 34.51%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 17.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.13 EPS. Equities research analysts anticipate that Cabot Oil & Gas Co. will post 1.7 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, August 22nd. Stockholders of record on Thursday, August 8th were issued a dividend of $0.09 per share. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, August 7th. This represents a $0.36 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.93%. Cabot Oil & Gas’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 31.86%.

Cabot Oil & Gas announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback program on Friday, July 26th that permits the company to buyback 25,000,000 outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the oil and gas exploration company to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are generally a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

Cabot Oil & Gas Company Profile

Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation, an independent oil and gas company, explores for, exploits, develops, produces, and markets natural gas, oil, and natural gas liquids in the United States. It primarily focuses on the Marcellus Shale with approximately 174,000 net acres in the dry gas window of the play located in Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania.

Further Reading: Hedge Funds – Risk or Reward?

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Cabot Oil & Gas (NYSE:COG)

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