Connecticut Water Service, Inc. (NASDAQ:CTWS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Connecticut Water Services returned higher than the Zacks categorized broader industry’s gain in the last twelve months. The company continues to strengthen its existing infrastructure through regular capital investments, which is a must in the water utility space. In addition, customer expansion in its service territories is boosting demand. However, Connecticut Water Services is subject to stringent environment regulations, demand variations with weather patterns, risk of water mains failure and contamination of water sources. “

Shares of Connecticut Water Service (CTWS) traded down 0.66% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, reaching $54.60. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 31,415 shares. Connecticut Water Service has a 12 month low of $45.13 and a 12 month high of $62.15. The company has a market cap of $631.39 million, a P/E ratio of 25.31 and a beta of 0.09. The company has a 50-day moving average of $55.67 and a 200-day moving average of $54.65.

Connecticut Water Service (NASDAQ:CTWS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Monday, May 8th. The utilities provider reported $0.36 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.37 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $24.21 million for the quarter. Connecticut Water Service had a net margin of 23.22% and a return on equity of 10.13%. Equities research analysts forecast that Connecticut Water Service will post $2.19 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 15th. Investors of record on Thursday, June 1st were given a dividend of $0.2975 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, May 30th. This represents a $1.19 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.18%. This is an increase from Connecticut Water Service’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.28. Connecticut Water Service’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 55.09%.

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Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in CTWS. Bank of Montreal Can increased its stake in shares of Connecticut Water Service by 137.5% in the first quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 1,983 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $105,000 after buying an additional 1,148 shares during the period. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Connecticut Water Service by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 3,333 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $187,000 after buying an additional 13 shares in the last quarter. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System bought a new stake in shares of Connecticut Water Service during the fourth quarter valued at about $204,000. Ameriprise Financial Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Connecticut Water Service during the first quarter valued at about $244,000. Finally, Sit Investment Associates Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Connecticut Water Service by 381.8% in the first quarter. Sit Investment Associates Inc. now owns 5,300 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $282,000 after buying an additional 4,200 shares in the last quarter. 45.83% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Connecticut Water Service Company Profile

Connecticut Water Service, Inc is a non-operating holding company. The Company’s income is derived from the earnings of its subsidiary companies, including The Connecticut Water Company (Connecticut Water), The Maine Water Company (Maine Water), New England Water Utility Services, Inc (NEWUS) and Chester Realty Company (Chester Realty).

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