Northwest Natural Gas Co (NWN) Receives Average Recommendation of “Hold” from Brokerages

Shares of Northwest Natural Gas Co (NYSE:NWN) have earned an average recommendation of “Hold” from the seven analysts that are currently covering the firm, Marketbeat Ratings reports. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The average twelve-month price objective among analysts that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $63.00.

Several equities research analysts have issued reports on the company. TheStreet downgraded Northwest Natural Gas from a “b” rating to a “c+” rating in a research report on Friday, January 12th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Northwest Natural Gas from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 8th. Sidoti downgraded Northwest Natural Gas from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $63.00 target price on the stock. in a research report on Monday, January 8th. Guggenheim downgraded Northwest Natural Gas from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, January 2nd. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada assumed coverage on Northwest Natural Gas in a research report on Tuesday, December 19th. They set a “sector perform” rating and a $63.00 target price on the stock.

Shares of Northwest Natural Gas (NWN) opened at $54.05 on Wednesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $1,638.08, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.57, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 5.57 and a beta of 0.33. Northwest Natural Gas has a 12-month low of $52.47 and a 12-month high of $69.50. The company has a current ratio of 0.98, a quick ratio of 0.69 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, February 15th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, January 31st will be issued a $0.4725 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, January 30th. This represents a $1.89 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.50%. Northwest Natural Gas’s payout ratio is currently 85.91%.

In other news, Director Mark S. Dodson sold 1,036 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, January 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $56.05, for a total value of $58,067.80. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Corporate insiders own 1.48% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio increased its holdings in shares of Northwest Natural Gas by 2.0% in the second quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 2,063 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $123,000 after purchasing an additional 40 shares during the period. D.A. Davidson & CO. increased its holdings in shares of Northwest Natural Gas by 61.0% in the second quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. now owns 2,111 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $126,000 after purchasing an additional 800 shares during the period. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Northwest Natural Gas by 6.4% in the second quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. now owns 2,496 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $149,000 after purchasing an additional 150 shares during the period. Flinton Capital Management LLC increased its holdings in shares of Northwest Natural Gas by 83.6% in the second quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 3,444 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $206,000 after purchasing an additional 1,568 shares during the period. Finally, Coldstream Capital Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Northwest Natural Gas in the third quarter worth $208,000. 64.95% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Northwest Natural Gas Company Profile

Northwest Natural Gas Company (NW Natural) is engaged in the distribution of natural gas. The Company’s segments include Local Gas Distribution, Gas Storage and other. The Company maintains operations in Oregon, Washington and California and conducts businesses through NW Natural and its subsidiaries.

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