Chesapeake Utilities (NYSE:CPK) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Chesapeake Utilities (NYSE:CPK) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Tuesday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Chesapeake Utilities Corporation is a utility company engaged in natural gas distribution and transmission, propane distribution and marketing, advanced information services and other related businesses.Chesapeake’s three natural gas distribution divisions serve residential, commercial and industrial customers in southern Delaware, Maryland’s Eastern Shore and Florida. The Company’s natural gas transmission subsidiary operates an interstate pipeline system that transports gas from various points in Pennsylvania to Delaware and Maryland distribution divisions. “

Several other equities analysts have also recently commented on CPK. Maxim Group set a $110.00 price target on shares of Chesapeake Utilities and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday. ValuEngine cut shares of Chesapeake Utilities from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 2nd. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $98.81.

Shares of Chesapeake Utilities stock traded down $1.28 on Tuesday, hitting $91.97. 68,100 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 60,655. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $94.25 and a 200 day moving average price of $93.19. The company has a quick ratio of 0.22, a current ratio of 0.24 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.53. Chesapeake Utilities has a 12-month low of $77.20 and a 12-month high of $97.00. The company has a market cap of $1.54 billion, a PE ratio of 27.79, a PEG ratio of 3.61 and a beta of 0.19.

Chesapeake Utilities (NYSE:CPK) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 8th. The utilities provider reported $0.50 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.54 by ($0.04). Chesapeake Utilities had a net margin of 8.62% and a return on equity of 11.30%. The company had revenue of $130.90 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $169.40 million. Equities research analysts anticipate that Chesapeake Utilities will post 3.72 EPS for the current year.

In related news, insider John R. Schimkaitis sold 2,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, October 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $94.41, for a total value of $236,025.00. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Insiders sold 2,858 shares of company stock valued at $269,817 over the last quarter. 4.18% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of CPK. Nuveen Asset Management LLC boosted its holdings in Chesapeake Utilities by 3,829.1% in the second quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 112,646 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $10,704,000 after purchasing an additional 109,779 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its holdings in Chesapeake Utilities by 5.3% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,038,030 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $98,633,000 after purchasing an additional 52,523 shares in the last quarter. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD boosted its holdings in Chesapeake Utilities by 1.9% in the second quarter. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD now owns 2,281,339 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $216,773,000 after purchasing an additional 43,274 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in Chesapeake Utilities by 2.4% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 1,353,148 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $128,576,000 after purchasing an additional 31,273 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D bought a new stake in Chesapeake Utilities in the second quarter worth $2,471,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 65.52% of the company’s stock.

About Chesapeake Utilities

Chesapeake Utilities Corporation, a diversified energy company, engages in regulated and unregulated energy businesses. The company operates in two segments, Regulated Energy and Unregulated Energy. The Regulated Energy segment engages in the distribution of natural gas in Delaware, Maryland, and Florida; distribution of electricity in Florida; and transmission of natural gas on the Delmarva Peninsula and in Florida.

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