Shares of Unitil Corp. (NYSE:UTL) have been assigned a consensus broker rating score of 3.00 (Hold) from the one analysts that provide coverage for the company, Zacks Investment Research reports. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold recommendation.

Analysts have set a one year consensus target price of $44.00 for the company and are forecasting that the company will post $0.14 EPS for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Zacks has also assigned Unitil Corp. an industry rank of 165 out of 265 based on the ratings given to its competitors.

Separately, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Unitil Corp. from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 22nd.

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Unitil Corp. (NYSE:UTL) traded up 0.49% on Wednesday, hitting $39.04. 7,561 shares of the stock were exchanged. The company has a market cap of $548.59 million, a P/E ratio of 22.36 and a beta of 0.19. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $40.17 and its 200-day moving average price is $41.07. Unitil Corp. has a one year low of $33.75 and a one year high of $45.16.

Unitil Corp. (NYSE:UTL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 21st. The company reported $0.18 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.13 by $0.05. Unitil Corp. had a return on equity of 8.58% and a net margin of 6.47%. The company had revenue of $73 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $79.90 million. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.12 earnings per share. Equities research analysts predict that Unitil Corp. will post $1.81 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, August 26th. Stockholders of record on Friday, August 12th were paid a $0.355 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, August 10th. This represents a $1.42 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.66%. Unitil Corp.’s payout ratio is 81.14%.

Large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. bought a new stake in shares of Unitil Corp. during the second quarter valued at about $9,962,000. Adage Capital Partners GP L.L.C. bought a new stake in shares of Unitil Corp. during the second quarter valued at about $8,534,000. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of Unitil Corp. by 10.0% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 797,160 shares of the company’s stock valued at $34,015,000 after buying an additional 72,713 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC increased its stake in shares of Unitil Corp. by 16.8% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 384,600 shares of the company’s stock valued at $16,342,000 after buying an additional 55,400 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Unitil Corp. by 50.6% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 153,611 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,526,000 after buying an additional 51,637 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 58.09% of the company’s stock.

About Unitil Corp.

Unitil Corporation (Unitil) is a public utility holding company. The Company is engaged in the local distribution of electricity and natural gas to customers throughout its service territories in the states of New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Maine. It operates through three segments: utility gas operations, utility electric operations and non-regulated.

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