NiSource (NYSE:NI) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of NiSource have gained higher than the industry it belongs to in the last 12 months. NiSource is benefiting from continued execution of its infrastructure investment strategy.  NiSource will annually invest nearly $1.6-$1.8 billion in planned utility infrastructures from 2019 to 2020 and has identified long-term infrastructure investments worth $30 billion. The company is also working actively to reduce its carbon footprint by bringing down the coal usage. Despite investing in upgrade programs, NiSource Inc. faces the risk of disruption in operation from its ageing infrastructure. NiSource’s rising debt level amid increasing interest rates is another concern.”

Other equities analysts have also issued research reports about the stock. Citigroup lifted their price target on shares of NiSource from $28.00 to $31.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, November 20th. KeyCorp reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $29.50 price target on shares of NiSource in a report on Friday, October 20th. Goldman Sachs Group raised shares of NiSource from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $23.00 target price for the company in a research note on Wednesday, January 10th. Edward Jones raised shares of NiSource from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, January 9th. Finally, Jefferies Group reissued a “hold” rating and set a $26.00 target price on shares of NiSource in a research note on Wednesday, December 20th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $27.32.

Shares of NiSource (NYSE NI) traded up $0.12 during trading hours on Thursday, hitting $24.15. 2,103,600 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 2,806,864. The firm has a market capitalization of $8,120.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.10, a PEG ratio of 3.17 and a beta of 0.43. The company has a current ratio of 0.52, a quick ratio of 0.32 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.72. NiSource has a 52 week low of $21.65 and a 52 week high of $27.76.

NiSource (NYSE:NI) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.07 EPS for the quarter, hitting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.07. The company had revenue of $917.00 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $901.00 million. NiSource had a net margin of 5.61% and a return on equity of 8.97%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.06 earnings per share. research analysts anticipate that NiSource will post 1.2 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. increased its stake in NiSource by 6.7% in the fourth quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 1,573,797 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $40,400,000 after purchasing an additional 98,999 shares in the last quarter. Bank of Montreal Can increased its stake in NiSource by 12.8% in the fourth quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 514,833 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $13,215,000 after purchasing an additional 58,418 shares in the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its position in shares of NiSource by 6.2% during the third quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 1,045,643 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $26,758,000 after acquiring an additional 60,828 shares in the last quarter. AXA increased its position in shares of NiSource by 43.2% during the third quarter. AXA now owns 495,100 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $12,669,000 after acquiring an additional 149,300 shares in the last quarter. Finally, GSA Capital Partners LLP increased its position in shares of NiSource by 129.3% during the third quarter. GSA Capital Partners LLP now owns 49,440 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,265,000 after acquiring an additional 27,879 shares in the last quarter. 82.20% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About NiSource

NiSource Inc is an energy holding company. The Company is engaged in the distribution of natural gas. The Company operates through two business segments: Gas Distribution Operations and Electric Operations. The Company’s Gas Distribution Operations segment provides natural gas service and transportation for residential, commercial and industrial customers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Kentucky, Maryland, Indiana and Massachusetts.

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