NiSource Inc. (NYSE:NI) has been given an average recommendation of “Buy” by the thirteen analysts that are covering the company, MarketBeat Ratings reports. Six analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and seven have assigned a buy recommendation to the company. The average 1 year target price among analysts that have covered the stock in the last year is $27.15.
NI has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Citigroup increased their price target on NiSource from $28.00 to $31.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, November 20th. Zacks Investment Research raised NiSource from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $27.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, January 16th. Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $26.00 price objective on shares of NiSource in a research report on Wednesday, December 20th. KeyCorp reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $29.50 price objective on shares of NiSource in a research report on Friday, October 20th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group raised NiSource from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $23.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, January 10th.
A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Maple Brown Abbott Ltd raised its stake in NiSource by 36.9% in the fourth quarter. Maple Brown Abbott Ltd now owns 3,451,218 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $88,593,000 after buying an additional 930,314 shares during the last quarter. Commonwealth Bank of Australia raised its stake in NiSource by 3.1% in the third quarter. Commonwealth Bank of Australia now owns 3,350,014 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $85,422,000 after buying an additional 102,242 shares during the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc raised its stake in NiSource by 6.2% in the third quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 2,615,015 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $66,917,000 after buying an additional 152,500 shares during the last quarter. Lord Abbett & CO. LLC purchased a new stake in NiSource in the second quarter valued at about $63,874,000. Finally, Duff & Phelps Investment Management Co. raised its stake in NiSource by 16.0% in the fourth quarter. Duff & Phelps Investment Management Co. now owns 2,456,600 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $63,061,000 after buying an additional 338,525 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 82.56% of the company’s stock.
NiSource (NYSE:NI) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.07 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.07. NiSource had a return on equity of 8.97% and a net margin of 5.61%. The business had revenue of $917.00 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $901.00 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.06 EPS. research analysts forecast that NiSource will post 1.19 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, February 20th. Investors of record on Friday, February 9th will be given a dividend of $0.195 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, February 8th. This represents a $0.78 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.22%. This is an increase from NiSource’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.18. NiSource’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 85.37%.
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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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