Spire (SR) Given New $72.00 Price Target at Morgan Stanley

Spire (NYSE:SR) had its price objective lifted by Morgan Stanley from $68.00 to $72.00 in a report published on Monday. Morgan Stanley currently has an underweight rating on the utilities provider’s stock.

Several other equities analysts have also recently commented on the stock. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Spire from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Friday, January 5th. Credit Suisse Group raised shares of Spire from a neutral rating to an outperform rating and dropped their target price for the stock from $68.25 to $68.00 in a research report on Monday, February 26th. Bank of America reissued a buy rating and set a $75.00 target price on shares of Spire in a research report on Monday, March 26th. Stifel Nicolaus reissued a hold rating and set a $65.00 target price on shares of Spire in a research report on Friday, February 2nd. Finally, Hilliard Lyons raised shares of Spire to a buy rating in a research report on Friday, February 2nd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $71.43.

Shares of NYSE SR opened at $70.45 on Monday. Spire has a fifty-two week low of $60.08 and a fifty-two week high of $82.85. The stock has a market capitalization of $3,468.69, a P/E ratio of 19.79, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 4.75 and a beta of 0.06. The company has a current ratio of 0.70, a quick ratio of 0.53 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.97.

Spire (NYSE:SR) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 1st. The utilities provider reported $1.19 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.06 by $0.13. Spire had a net margin of 12.86% and a return on equity of 8.91%. The business had revenue of $561.80 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $516.16 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.04 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 13.5% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts expect that Spire will post 3.75 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, April 3rd. Shareholders of record on Monday, March 12th were given a dividend of $0.563 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, March 9th. This represents a $2.25 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.20%. This is a boost from Spire’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.56. Spire’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 63.20%.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Advisor Group Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Spire by 62.0% in the 4th quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 2,635 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $198,000 after purchasing an additional 1,008 shares during the period. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank raised its holdings in shares of Spire by 52.3% in the 4th quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 2,780 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $209,000 after purchasing an additional 955 shares during the period. Neuberger Berman Group LLC bought a new stake in shares of Spire in the 3rd quarter worth approximately $219,000. Parametrica Management Ltd bought a new stake in shares of Spire in the 4th quarter worth approximately $222,000. Finally, Zeke Capital Advisors LLC bought a new stake in shares of Spire in the 4th quarter worth approximately $227,000. 82.88% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Spire Company Profile

Spire Inc, through its subsidiaries, engages in the purchase, retail distribution, and sale of natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and other end-users of natural gas customers in the United States. It operates through two segments, Gas Utility and Gas Marketing. The company is also involved in marketing natural gas and provides energy services on non-regulated basis to on-system utility transportation customers, as well as to retail and wholesale customers.

Analyst Recommendations for Spire (NYSE:SR)

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