Middlesex Water (NASDAQ:MSEX) Upgraded to “Buy” by BidaskClub

BidaskClub upgraded shares of Middlesex Water (NASDAQ:MSEX) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report published on Tuesday, BidAskClub reports.

Separately, Zacks Investment Research downgraded Middlesex Water from a hold rating to a strong sell rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 7th.

Shares of MSEX opened at $63.66 on Tuesday. The company has a market cap of $1.05 billion, a PE ratio of 31.00 and a beta of 0.36. The business has a fifty day moving average of $60.31 and a 200 day moving average of $59.02. Middlesex Water has a 52-week low of $43.12 and a 52-week high of $65.13. The company has a quick ratio of 0.26, a current ratio of 0.31 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.64.

Middlesex Water (NASDAQ:MSEX) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 31st. The utilities provider reported $0.49 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.55 by ($0.06). The company had revenue of $33.39 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $36.00 million. Middlesex Water had a return on equity of 13.43% and a net margin of 24.95%. As a group, research analysts anticipate that Middlesex Water will post 1.97 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, September 3rd. Stockholders of record on Thursday, August 15th were given a dividend of $0.24 per share. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, August 14th. This represents a $0.96 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.51%. Middlesex Water’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 48.98%.

In other news, VP Robert K. Fullagar sold 500 shares of Middlesex Water stock in a transaction on Tuesday, July 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.39, for a total transaction of $30,695.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 1,900 shares in the company, valued at $116,641. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP Lorrie Beth Ginegaw sold 650 shares of Middlesex Water stock in a transaction on Friday, July 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.48, for a total value of $39,962.00. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 5,779 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $355,292.92. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 3.49% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. lifted its position in shares of Middlesex Water by 4.4% during the second quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 11,143 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $661,000 after purchasing an additional 474 shares during the last quarter. Eaton Vance Management increased its stake in shares of Middlesex Water by 65.5% during the second quarter. Eaton Vance Management now owns 97,308 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $5,765,000 after buying an additional 38,514 shares during the period. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Middlesex Water by 19.6% during the second quarter. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. now owns 294,042 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $108,106,000 after buying an additional 48,184 shares during the period. Summit Global Investments purchased a new position in shares of Middlesex Water during the second quarter valued at $729,000. Finally, Nuveen Asset Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Middlesex Water during the second quarter valued at $4,021,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 55.51% of the company’s stock.

About Middlesex Water

Middlesex Water Company, together with its subsidiaries, owns and operates regulated water utility and wastewater systems. It operates in two segments, Regulated and Non-Regulated. The Regulated segment engages in collecting, treating, and distributing water on a retail and wholesale basis to residential, commercial, industrial, and fire protection customers in parts of New Jersey, Delaware, and Pennsylvania.

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