Zacks Investment Research Upgrades Artesian Resources (NASDAQ:ARTNA) to Hold

Artesian Resources (NASDAQ:ARTNAGet Rating) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Monday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Artesian Resources Corporation operates as the parent holding company of Artesian Water Company, Inc a regulated public water utility. Artesian Water provides water utility service to customers with in its established service territory in portions of New Castle County, Delaware. “

Separately, StockNews.com upgraded Artesian Resources from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 11th.

Shares of NASDAQ:ARTNA traded down $0.32 during trading on Monday, reaching $45.05. 248 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 23,712. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.79, a quick ratio of 0.25 and a current ratio of 0.30. Artesian Resources has a 12-month low of $35.90 and a 12-month high of $50.88. The firm has a market cap of $423.74 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.89 and a beta of 0.09. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $47.12 and its 200 day moving average price is $45.67.

Artesian Resources (NASDAQ:ARTNAGet Rating) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, May 3rd. The utilities provider reported $0.47 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.49 by ($0.02). The company had revenue of $22.19 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $21.00 million. Artesian Resources had a return on equity of 9.70% and a net margin of 18.53%. As a group, equities research analysts forecast that Artesian Resources will post 1.9 EPS for the current year.

In related news, SVP Pierre A. Anderson sold 628 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, March 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.00, for a total transaction of $30,144.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Nicholle Renee Taylor sold 2,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, March 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.02, for a total value of $94,040.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders sold 10,524 shares of company stock worth $500,788. 20.59% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Deutsche Bank AG increased its position in Artesian Resources by 0.5% in the fourth quarter. Deutsche Bank AG now owns 56,644 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $2,624,000 after buying an additional 260 shares during the period. Royal Bank of Canada increased its position in Artesian Resources by 7.7% in the third quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 4,501 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $172,000 after buying an additional 322 shares during the period. Morgan Stanley increased its position in Artesian Resources by 0.3% in the second quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 146,188 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $5,375,000 after buying an additional 408 shares during the period. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company increased its position in Artesian Resources by 8.7% in the fourth quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 6,066 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $281,000 after buying an additional 483 shares during the period. Finally, Rockefeller Capital Management L.P. increased its position in Artesian Resources by 7.2% in the fourth quarter. Rockefeller Capital Management L.P. now owns 7,893 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $365,000 after buying an additional 532 shares during the period. 45.75% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Artesian Resources (Get Rating)

Artesian Resources Corporation, through its subsidiaries, provides water, wastewater, and other services in Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. The company distributes and sells water to residential, commercial, industrial, governmental, municipal, and utility customers, as well as for public and private fire protection in the states of Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania; and offers wastewater collection, treatment infrastructure, and wastewater services to customers in Delaware.

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