National Fuel Gas Co. (NYSE:NFG) – Research analysts at Jefferies Group lifted their FY2016 earnings estimates for National Fuel Gas in a report released on Thursday. Jefferies Group analyst C. Sighinolfi now forecasts that the brokerage will post earnings per share of $2.97 for the year, up from their previous estimate of $2.90. Jefferies Group currently has a “Buy” rating and a $67.00 price target on the stock. Jefferies Group also issued estimates for National Fuel Gas’ Q4 2016 earnings at $0.53 EPS, Q2 2017 earnings at $1.01 EPS, Q3 2017 earnings at $0.65 EPS, Q4 2017 earnings at $0.50 EPS and FY2020 earnings at $5.30 EPS.
National Fuel Gas (NYSE:NFG) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, August 5th. The company reported $0.68 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.65 by $0.03. The firm earned $335.60 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $384.26 million. National Fuel Gas had a positive return on equity of 13.87% and a negative net margin of 35.33%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 1.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.55 earnings per share.
Other analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. Zacks Investment Research raised National Fuel Gas from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $63.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, July 5th. Barclays PLC raised their target price on National Fuel Gas from $47.00 to $61.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 10th. Finally, Argus reissued a “hold” rating on shares of National Fuel Gas in a research note on Thursday. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $61.83.
Shares of National Fuel Gas (NYSE:NFG) opened at 54.03 on Friday. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $55.59 and a 200 day moving average price of $55.02. National Fuel Gas has a 52 week low of $37.03 and a 52 week high of $59.62. The stock’s market capitalization is $4.59 billion.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, October 14th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 30th were given a dividend of $0.405 per share. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, September 28th. This represents a $1.62 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.00%. National Fuel Gas’s payout ratio is -26.60%.
In other National Fuel Gas news, Director Philip C. Ackerman sold 105,929 shares of National Fuel Gas stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $55.09, for a total transaction of $5,835,628.61. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 477,765 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $26,320,073.85. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, COO John R. Pustulka sold 12,000 shares of National Fuel Gas stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.58, for a total transaction of $702,960.00. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 65,077 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,812,210.66. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 3.25% of the company’s stock.
Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in NFG. Aperio Group LLC raised its position in National Fuel Gas by 1.1% in the first quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 24,640 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,233,000 after buying an additional 258 shares during the last quarter. Virginia Retirement System acquired a new position in National Fuel Gas during the first quarter valued at about $485,000. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC raised its position in National Fuel Gas by 12.7% in the first quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 189,828 shares of the company’s stock valued at $9,501,000 after buying an additional 21,438 shares during the last quarter. Teachers Advisors Inc. raised its position in National Fuel Gas by 7.8% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors Inc. now owns 226,060 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,314,000 after buying an additional 16,385 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Prudential Financial Inc. raised its position in National Fuel Gas by 8.7% in the first quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 417,660 shares of the company’s stock valued at $20,904,000 after buying an additional 33,570 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 62.45% of the company’s stock.
About National Fuel Gas
National Fuel Gas Company is a holding company. The Company is an energy company engaged in the production, gathering, transportation, distribution and marketing of natural gas. The Company operates through five segments: Exploration and Production, including operations carried out through its subsidiary, Seneca Resources Corporation; Pipeline and Storage, including operations carried out through its subsidiaries, National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation and Empire Pipeline, Inc; Gathering, including operations carried out through subsidiaries of National Fuel Gas Midstream Corporation; Utility, including operations are carried out by through its subsidiary, Distribution Corporation, and Energy Marketing, including operations carried out through its subsidiary, National Fuel Resources, Inc The Company operates an integrated business, with assets centered in western New York and Pennsylvania.
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