Southwest Airlines Co. (LUV) Upgraded by Vetr Inc. to “Strong-Buy”
Vetr upgraded shares of Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE:LUV) from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research report sent to investors on Wednesday morning. The brokerage currently has $43.50 price target on the airline’s stock.
Several other research analysts have also issued reports on the stock. Evercore ISI raised shares of Southwest Airlines from a hold rating to a buy rating and dropped their price target for the stock from $47.00 to $37.36 in a research report on Tuesday, July 26th. Morgan Stanley reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $43.00 price objective on shares of Southwest Airlines in a report on Sunday, August 21st. Argus lowered shares of Southwest Airlines from a buy rating to a hold rating and raised their price objective for the stock from $32.94 to $37.83 in a report on Monday, July 25th. Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed an outperform rating on shares of Southwest Airlines in a report on Wednesday, July 6th. Finally, Buckingham Research lowered shares of Southwest Airlines from a buy rating to a neutral rating in a report on Friday, July 22nd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating, nine have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $48.05.
Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) opened at 38.07 on Wednesday. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $37.04 and its 200 day moving average price is $40.80. Southwest Airlines has a 12-month low of $33.96 and a 12-month high of $51.34. The company has a market capitalization of $23.61 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.10 and a beta of 0.84.
Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 21st. The airline reported $1.19 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.21 by $0.02. Southwest Airlines had a return on equity of 34.25% and a net margin of 11.95%. The business earned $5.38 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.41 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.03 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.3% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Southwest Airlines will post $3.78 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 8th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, August 18th were given a dividend of $0.10 per share. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, August 16th. This represents a $0.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.05%. Southwest Airlines’s dividend payout ratio is 10.61%.
In other news, SVP Mark R. Shaw sold 1,776 shares of Southwest Airlines stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $37.62, for a total transaction of $66,813.12. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 5,226 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $196,602.12. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Gary C. Kelly purchased 28,106 shares of Southwest Airlines stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 2nd. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $35.58 per share, for a total transaction of $1,000,011.48. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 505,119 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $17,972,134.02. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders own 0.18% of the company’s stock.
Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 1.9% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 38,790,694 shares of the airline’s stock worth $1,520,983,000 after buying an additional 739,007 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp boosted its stake in Southwest Airlines by 1.7% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 22,391,063 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $1,003,110,000 after buying an additional 373,352 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. boosted its stake in Southwest Airlines by 2.3% in the second quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 17,921,904 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $702,718,000 after buying an additional 397,249 shares in the last quarter. Bank of Montreal Can bought a new stake in Southwest Airlines during the second quarter valued at approximately $246,179,000. Finally, Janus Capital Management LLC boosted its stake in Southwest Airlines by 20.1% in the second quarter. Janus Capital Management LLC now owns 5,796,281 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $227,272,000 after buying an additional 969,666 shares in the last quarter. 78.34% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
About Southwest Airlines
Southwest Airlines Co (Southwest) operates Southwest Airlines. Southwest is a passenger airline that provides scheduled air transportation in the United States and near-international markets. The Company serves approximately 100 destinations in over 40 states, such as the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and approximately seven near-international countries, including Mexico, Jamaica, The Bahamas, Aruba, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, and Belize.
Receive News & Stock Ratings for Southwest Airlines Co. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Southwest Airlines Co. and related stocks with our FREE daily email newsletter.