Verition Fund Management LLC reduced its stake in shares of Sempra (NYSE:SRE – Get Rating) by 93.7% in the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 4,034 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 60,465 shares during the period. Verition Fund Management LLC’s holdings in Sempra were worth $678,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Golden State Equity Partners increased its position in shares of Sempra by 2.9% during the first quarter. Golden State Equity Partners now owns 5,580 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $938,000 after acquiring an additional 156 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. grew its stake in Sempra by 9.8% in the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 29,524,026 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $3,905,435,000 after purchasing an additional 2,631,949 shares during the period. Advisor Group Holdings Inc. grew its stake in Sempra by 0.5% in the 1st quarter. Advisor Group Holdings Inc. now owns 106,365 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $17,187,000 after purchasing an additional 563 shares during the period. Herold Advisors Inc. bought a new position in Sempra in the 1st quarter valued at $34,000. Finally, Van ECK Associates Corp grew its stake in Sempra by 2.4% in the 1st quarter. Van ECK Associates Corp now owns 61,780 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $10,386,000 after purchasing an additional 1,422 shares during the period. 85.37% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
Analysts Set New Price Targets
SRE has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. Morgan Stanley reduced their price objective on Sempra from $169.00 to $165.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday. The Goldman Sachs Group upgraded Sempra from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their price objective for the company from $164.00 to $167.00 in a research note on Wednesday, July 6th. Barclays reduced their price objective on Sempra from $186.00 to $176.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a research note on Monday, July 18th. Bank of America upgraded Sempra from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 14th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company increased their price target on Sempra from $184.00 to $189.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Thursday, September 15th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company. According to data from MarketBeat, the stock presently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average target price of $171.67.
Sempra Stock Down 0.6 %
Sempra (NYSE:SRE – Get Rating) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, August 4th. The utilities provider reported $1.98 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.75 by $0.23. Sempra had a return on equity of 11.01% and a net margin of 8.84%. The business had revenue of $3.55 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.63 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 29.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Research analysts anticipate that Sempra will post 8.65 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Sempra Announces Dividend
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Saturday, October 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 23rd will be paid a $1.145 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 22nd. This represents a $4.58 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.79%. Sempra’s dividend payout ratio is currently 128.29%.
Sempra operates as an energy-services holding company in the United States and internationally. The company's San Diego Gas & Electric Company segment provides electric services; and supplies natural gas. It offers electric services to approximately 3.6 million population and natural gas services to approximately 3.3 million population that covers 4,100 square miles.
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