Fortis Inc. (NYSE:FTS) – Research analysts at National Bank Financial raised their FY2017 EPS estimates for shares of Fortis in a research note issued to investors on Monday. National Bank Financial analyst P. Kenny now anticipates that the utilities provider will post earnings per share of $2.13 for the year, up from their prior estimate of $2.03. National Bank Financial has a “Underperform” rating on the stock. National Bank Financial also issued estimates for Fortis’ FY2018 earnings at $2.18 EPS, FY2020 earnings at $2.23 EPS and FY2021 earnings at $2.27 EPS.
A number of other research firms also recently weighed in on FTS. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Fortis from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, October 19th. Scotiabank reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $51.00 price objective on shares of Fortis in a report on Monday, December 4th. Raymond James Financial raised Fortis from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, February 9th. Finally, UBS Group raised Fortis from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, February 9th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $42.33.
Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in FTS. Alliancebernstein L.P. boosted its holdings in shares of Fortis by 44.0% in the 2nd quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 53,061 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $1,865,000 after acquiring an additional 16,223 shares in the last quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Fortis by 12.3% in the 2nd quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 3,480 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $122,000 after acquiring an additional 382 shares in the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Fortis by 0.3% in the 2nd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 15,074 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $530,000 after acquiring an additional 44 shares in the last quarter. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC acquired a new position in shares of Fortis in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $345,000. Finally, Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Fortis by 16.9% in the 2nd quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. now owns 16,218 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $570,000 after acquiring an additional 2,345 shares in the last quarter. 49.57% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 1st. Stockholders of record on Thursday, February 15th will be issued a $0.3353 dividend. This represents a $1.34 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.15%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, February 14th. Fortis’s payout ratio is currently 70.16%.
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Fortis Inc operates as an electric and gas utility company in Canada, the United States, and the Caribbean. It generates, transmits, and distributes electricity to approximately 420,000 retail customers in a territory comprising approximately 2,991 square kilometers located in southeastern Arizona, including the greater Tucson metropolitan area in Pima county, as well as parts of Cochise county; and 95,000 retail customers in Arizonas Mohave and Santa Cruz counties with an aggregate capacity of 2,994 megawatts (MW) comprising 54 MW of solar capacity.
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