Townsquare Capital LLC acquired a new position in Aqua America Inc (NYSE:WTR) in the 2nd quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm acquired 10,407 shares of the utilities provider’s stock, valued at approximately $436,000.
Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Krane Funds Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Aqua America in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $25,000. Bremer Bank National Association purchased a new stake in Aqua America in the 1st quarter worth approximately $25,000. Signaturefd LLC lifted its holdings in Aqua America by 1,365.2% in the 1st quarter. Signaturefd LLC now owns 674 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $25,000 after buying an additional 628 shares during the period. Oakworth Capital Inc. purchased a new stake in Aqua America in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $28,000. Finally, Centersquare Investment Management LLC purchased a new stake in Aqua America in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $32,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 65.17% of the company’s stock.
In related news, Director Daniel J. Hilferty III acquired 1,152 shares of Aqua America stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, September 9th. The stock was bought at an average price of $43.38 per share, with a total value of $49,973.76. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 9,872 shares in the company, valued at $428,247.36. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, Director Daniel J. Hilferty III acquired 1,153 shares of Aqua America stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 15th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $43.35 per share, with a total value of $49,982.55. Following the transaction, the director now owns 8,720 shares in the company, valued at $378,012. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Company insiders own 0.30% of the company’s stock.
Aqua America (NYSE:WTR) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, August 6th. The utilities provider reported $0.37 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.39 by ($0.02). The firm had revenue of $218.90 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $221.07 million. Aqua America had a net margin of 17.18% and a return on equity of 10.13%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.37 EPS. On average, analysts expect that Aqua America Inc will post 1.47 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Sunday, September 1st. Stockholders of record on Friday, August 16th were paid a $0.2343 dividend. This represents a $0.94 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.08%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, August 15th. This is a boost from Aqua America’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.22. Aqua America’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 66.67%.
Several equities research analysts have weighed in on the company. Argus increased their price objective on Aqua America from $2.00 to $43.00 in a report on Wednesday, June 5th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. HSBC set a $46.00 price objective on Aqua America and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 28th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Aqua America from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $47.00 price objective for the company in a report on Thursday, August 22nd. Wells Fargo & Co set a $47.00 target price on Aqua America and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 3rd. Finally, UBS Group cut Aqua America from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and raised their target price for the company from $42.00 to $45.00 in a research note on Thursday, August 8th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $43.00.
About Aqua America
Aqua America, Inc, through its subsidiaries, operates regulated utilities that provide water or wastewater services in the United States. It offers water services through operating and maintenance contracts with municipal authorities and other parties. The company also provides non-utility raw water supply services for firms in the natural gas drilling industry; and water and sewer line protection solutions, and repair services to households through third-party.
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