Union Pacific Corp. (UNP) Rating Increased to Buy at Zacks Investment Research
Union Pacific Corp. (NYSE:UNP) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday. The brokerage currently has a $109.00 target price on the railroad operator’s stock. Zacks Investment Research’s target price would indicate a potential upside of 11.97% from the company’s previous close.
According to Zacks, “We are impressed with Union Pacific’s efforts to reward its investors through share buybacks and dividend payments. The company has an impressive history of making dividend payments for 117 consecutive years. The announcement for the latest quarterly installment of $0.55 per share was made in late July. Apart from dividend payouts, we are encouraged by the company's prudent cost management. Operating expenses declined 11% in the second quarter. Lower costs are expected to drive the bottom line in the third quarter as well, detailed results of which will be declared on Oct 20. The Zacks Consensus Estimate has inched up almost 1% to $1.38 per share over the last 30 days. The company is on track to achieve its operating ratio guidance of around 60% by 2019. However, the company continues to struggle due to coal-related headwinds. Also, the opening of the expanded Panama Canal, earlier this year, may hurt the company’s business.”
A number of other analysts have also issued reports on the company. Vetr lowered Union Pacific Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $90.44 price target for the company. in a report on Wednesday, August 17th. Citigroup Inc. set a $106.00 price objective on shares of Union Pacific Corp. and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 13th. Barclays PLC boosted their price objective on shares of Union Pacific Corp. from $91.00 to $104.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Monday, September 12th. Argus reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $100.00 price objective on shares of Union Pacific Corp. in a research note on Monday, July 25th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $94.00 price objective on shares of Union Pacific Corp. in a research note on Sunday, August 21st. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and fourteen have given a buy rating to the company. Union Pacific Corp. has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $96.12.
Union Pacific Corp. (NYSE:UNP) opened at 97.35 on Tuesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $81.08 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.95 and a beta of 0.84. Union Pacific Corp. has a 1-year low of $67.06 and a 1-year high of $98.28. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $94.83 and a 200-day moving average price of $88.60.
Union Pacific Corp. (NYSE:UNP) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 21st. The railroad operator reported $1.17 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.17. The firm earned $4.77 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $4.80 billion. Union Pacific Corp. had a return on equity of 21.29% and a net margin of 21.48%. Union Pacific Corp.’s quarterly revenue was down 12.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.38 earnings per share. Equities research analysts expect that Union Pacific Corp. will post $5.03 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 30th. Investors of record on Wednesday, August 31st were given a dividend of $0.55 per share. The ex-dividend date was Monday, August 29th. This represents a $2.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.26%. Union Pacific Corp.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 42.80%.
In other Union Pacific Corp. news, EVP Robert M. Knight, Jr. sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $97.00, for a total value of $485,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 150,660 shares in the company, valued at approximately $14,614,020. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Robert M. Knight, Jr. sold 10,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $95.24, for a total transaction of $952,400.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 150,660 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $14,348,858.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.14% of the company’s stock.
A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Harel Insurance Investments & Financial Services Ltd. acquired a new stake in Union Pacific Corp. during the second quarter worth approximately $108,000. Tradewinds Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Union Pacific Corp. by 22.4% in the second quarter. Tradewinds Capital Management LLC now owns 1,364 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $119,000 after buying an additional 250 shares in the last quarter. Community Bank N.A. increased its stake in shares of Union Pacific Corp. by 41.9% in the second quarter. Community Bank N.A. now owns 1,422 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $124,000 after buying an additional 420 shares in the last quarter. Arcadia Investment Management Corp MI increased its stake in shares of Union Pacific Corp. by 164.4% in the second quarter. Arcadia Investment Management Corp MI now owns 1,507 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $131,000 after buying an additional 937 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Delphi Private Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Union Pacific Corp. by 0.8% in the second quarter. Delphi Private Advisors LLC now owns 1,547 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $135,000 after buying an additional 13 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 78.14% of the company’s stock.
Union Pacific Corp. Company Profile
Union Pacific Corporation operates through its principal operating company, Union Pacific Railroad Company. Union Pacific Railroad Company links approximately 20 states in the western two-thirds of the country by rail, providing link in the supply chain. The Company’s business mix includes agricultural products, automotive, chemicals, coal, industrial products and intermodal.
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