Heavy Trading On Atmos Energy (ATO) Before Market Open

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

Trade-Ideas LLC identified Atmos Energy ( ATO) as a pre-market mover with heavy volume candidate. In addition to specific proprietary factors, Trade-Ideas identified Atmos Energy as such a stock due to the following factors:

  • ATO has an average dollar-volume (as measured by average daily share volume multiplied by share price) of $30.6 million.
  • ATO traded 141,938 shares today in the pre-market hours as of 7:30 AM, representing 20.9% of its average daily volume.

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More details on ATO:

Atmos Energy Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, is engaged in the distribution, transmission, and storage of natural gas in the United States. It operates in three segments: Natural Gas Distribution, Regulated Transmission and Storage, and Nonregulated. The stock currently has a dividend yield of 3.1%. ATO has a PE ratio of 18.1. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate Atmos Energy a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

The average volume for Atmos Energy has been 371,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. Atmos Energy has a market cap of $4.3 billion and is part of the utilities sector and utilities industry. The stock has a beta of 0.45 and a short float of 1.8% with 2.42 days to cover. Shares are up 4.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday.

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TheStreetRatings.com Analysis:

TheStreet Quant Ratings rates Atmos Energy as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • ATO's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 17.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 21.4%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • Investors have apparently begun to recognize positive factors similar to those we have mentioned in this report, including earnings growth. This has helped drive up the company's shares by a sharp 25.27% over the past year, a rise that has exceeded that of the S&P 500 Index. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, ATO should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • ATMOS ENERGY CORP has improved earnings per share by 11.8% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, ATMOS ENERGY CORP increased its bottom line by earning $2.52 versus $2.10 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.80 versus $2.52).
  • The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Gas Utilities industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, ATMOS ENERGY CORP has outperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.
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