Spire Inc. (NYSE:SR – Get Rating) has been assigned an average recommendation of “Hold” from the ten research firms that are presently covering the firm, Marketbeat Ratings reports. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and seven have issued a hold rating on the company. The average 1-year price target among brokers that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $69.00.
A number of analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Morgan Stanley upped their price target on shares of Spire from $74.00 to $75.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Monday. Mizuho reduced their price target on shares of Spire from $72.00 to $69.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, December 8th. Bank of America lowered shares of Spire from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and reduced their price target for the stock from $78.00 to $61.00 in a research note on Monday, December 12th. Wells Fargo & Company reduced their price target on shares of Spire from $78.00 to $71.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, October 19th. Finally, Guggenheim upped their price target on shares of Spire from $61.00 to $63.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, December 7th.
Institutional Trading of Spire
Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in SR. BlackRock Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Spire by 1.0% during the third quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 6,275,773 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $391,169,000 after acquiring an additional 60,640 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Spire by 2.6% during the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 5,411,808 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $337,318,000 after acquiring an additional 136,434 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its holdings in shares of Spire by 2.6% during the third quarter. State Street Corp now owns 2,350,580 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $148,082,000 after acquiring an additional 60,351 shares during the period. Macquarie Group Ltd. raised its holdings in shares of Spire by 1.4% during the third quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 1,251,602 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $78,377,000 after acquiring an additional 17,019 shares during the period. Finally, Franklin Resources Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Spire by 2.0% during the second quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 1,024,745 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $76,210,000 after acquiring an additional 20,585 shares during the period. 99.86% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Spire Trading Up 0.9 %
Spire (NYSE:SR – Get Rating) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, November 16th. The utilities provider reported ($0.66) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.64) by ($0.02). The firm had revenue of $314.20 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $280.97 million. Spire had a net margin of 10.04% and a return on equity of 8.48%. Sell-side analysts expect that Spire will post 4.14 earnings per share for the current year.
Spire Cuts Dividend
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, January 4th. Investors of record on Monday, December 12th were paid a dividend of $0.14 per share. This represents a $0.56 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.79%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, December 9th. Spire’s dividend payout ratio is presently 72.36%.
Spire Company Profile
Spire Inc operates as a public utility holding company, which provides natural gas service through its utility operations while engaging in non-regulated activities. It operates through the Gas Utility and Gas Marketing Business segments. The Gas Utility segment includes the regulated operations of Laclede Gas Company and Alabama Gas Corporation.
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