South Jersey Industries (NYSE:SJI) Upgraded to Buy by Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of South Jersey Industries (NYSE:SJIGet Rating) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note released on Friday morning, Zacks.com reports. The brokerage currently has $39.00 target price on the utilities provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “South Jersey Industries, Inc., an energy services holding company based in Folsom, NJ, delivers energy solutions to its customers through three primary subsidiaries. South Jersey Gas delivers safe, reliable, affordable natural gas and promotes energy efficiency to customers in southern New Jersey. SJI’s non-utility businesses within South Jersey Energy Solutions promote efficiency, clean technology and renewable energy by providing customized wholesale commodity marketing and fuel management services; acquiring and marketing natural gas and electricity for retail customers; and developing, owning and operating on-site energy production facilities. SJI Midstream is also an SJI subsidiary and houses the company’s interest in the PennEast Pipeline Project. “

SJI has been the topic of a number of other reports. Bank of America downgraded shares of South Jersey Industries from a buy rating to a neutral rating and set a $25.00 price target on the stock. in a report on Thursday, February 17th. StockNews.com raised shares of South Jersey Industries from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, May 12th. Finally, Maxim Group cut shares of South Jersey Industries from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Friday, February 25th. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, According to MarketBeat.com, the stock currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $28.80.

NYSE SJI opened at $34.60 on Friday. The company has a quick ratio of 0.81, a current ratio of 0.84 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.45. The company has a 50-day simple moving average of $34.25 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $29.28. The firm has a market cap of $4.24 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.69 and a beta of 0.71. South Jersey Industries has a 12-month low of $20.75 and a 12-month high of $35.32.

South Jersey Industries (NYSE:SJIGet Rating) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 4th. The utilities provider reported $1.08 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.15 by ($0.07). South Jersey Industries had a net margin of 4.14% and a return on equity of 9.82%. The firm had revenue of $824.58 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $689.67 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.26 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 22.3% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts expect that South Jersey Industries will post 1.69 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, July 5th. Stockholders of record on Friday, June 10th will be paid a $0.31 dividend. This represents a $1.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.58%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, June 9th.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System raised its position in shares of South Jersey Industries by 0.6% during the 1st quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 54,700 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,890,000 after buying an additional 300 shares in the last quarter. CIBC Asset Management Inc grew its position in South Jersey Industries by 3.3% during the fourth quarter. CIBC Asset Management Inc now owns 12,740 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $333,000 after purchasing an additional 408 shares in the last quarter. Exchange Traded Concepts LLC grew its position in South Jersey Industries by 1.8% during the fourth quarter. Exchange Traded Concepts LLC now owns 23,094 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $603,000 after purchasing an additional 417 shares in the last quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio grew its position in South Jersey Industries by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 100,428 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $2,623,000 after acquiring an additional 424 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Signaturefd LLC grew its position in South Jersey Industries by 49.3% in the first quarter. Signaturefd LLC now owns 1,302 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $45,000 after acquiring an additional 430 shares in the last quarter. 84.30% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

South Jersey Industries Company Profile (Get Rating)

South Jersey Industries, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides energy-related products and services. The company engages in the purchase, transmission, and sale of natural gas. It also sells natural gas and pipeline transportation capacity on a wholesale basis to residential, commercial, and industrial customers on the interstate pipeline system, as well as transports natural gas purchased directly from producers or suppliers to customers.

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