American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ:AAL) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “American Airlines posted disappointing traffic numbers for the month of September. Load factor declined in the month as the reduction in traffic was greater than the capacity contraction. Moreover, multiple labor deals inked by the company in recent times are expected to hurt its near-term earnings as costs escalate. The carrier expects unit costs for 2016 to increase in the band of 5–7%, on a year-over-year basis. We expect the company’s third-quarter results, which are scheduled to be released on Oct 20, to be hampered by higher costs. Moreover, headwinds like the surge in terror attacks, a weak balance sheet and the uncertainty following Brexit are other challenges faced by the carrier. We are, however, positive on the U.S. DOT's decision to grant American Airlines the permission to initiate commercial flights to Havana.”

AAL has been the subject of several other research reports. Vetr cut shares of American Airlines Group from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $41.42 target price for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, August 30th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. decreased their price objective on shares of American Airlines Group from $50.50 to $41.50 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a report on Wednesday, July 27th. Bank of America Corp. reiterated an “underperform” rating and issued a $29.00 price objective (up from $27.00) on shares of American Airlines Group in a report on Friday, July 15th. Imperial Capital began coverage on shares of American Airlines Group in a report on Friday, August 26th. They issued an “in-line” rating and a $40.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Morgan Stanley set a $41.00 price objective on shares of American Airlines Group and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, August 18th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $42.00.

Analyst Recommendations for American Airlines Group (NASDAQ:AAL)

American Airlines Group (NASDAQ:AAL) opened at 38.20 on Wednesday. American Airlines Group has a 12-month low of $24.85 and a 12-month high of $47.09. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $36.78 and its 200-day moving average price is $34.93. The stock has a market cap of $20.24 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 3.61 and a beta of 0.97.

American Airlines Group (NASDAQ:AAL) last posted its earnings results on Friday, July 22nd. The airline reported $1.77 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.68 by $0.09. American Airlines Group had a net margin of 16.50% and a return on equity of 107.21%. The firm earned $10.40 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $10.27 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $2.62 EPS. American Airlines Group’s quarterly revenue was down 4.3% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts forecast that American Airlines Group will post $5.44 EPS for the current year.

In other American Airlines Group news, EVP Beverly K. Goulet sold 20,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $37.50, for a total value of $750,000.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 268,604 shares in the company, valued at approximately $10,072,650. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, EVP Maya Leibman sold 10,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.34, for a total transaction of $363,400.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 196,907 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,155,600.38. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.64% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in AAL. Checchi Capital Advisers LLC raised its position in American Airlines Group by 0.9% in the second quarter. Checchi Capital Advisers LLC now owns 4,145 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $117,000 after buying an additional 37 shares in the last quarter. Personal Capital Advisors Corp raised its position in American Airlines Group by 0.6% in the second quarter. Personal Capital Advisors Corp now owns 12,695 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $359,000 after buying an additional 72 shares in the last quarter. Pacific Global Investment Management CO raised its position in American Airlines Group by 1.5% in the first quarter. Pacific Global Investment Management CO now owns 5,001 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $205,000 after buying an additional 74 shares in the last quarter. SSI Investment Management Inc. raised its position in American Airlines Group by 1.7% in the second quarter. SSI Investment Management Inc. now owns 8,371 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $237,000 after buying an additional 141 shares in the last quarter. Finally, TCW Group Inc. raised its position in American Airlines Group by 0.5% in the second quarter. TCW Group Inc. now owns 42,400 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $1,200,000 after buying an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 74.62% of the company’s stock.

American Airlines Group Company Profile

American Airlines Group Inc (AAG) is a holding company whose primary business activity is the operation of a network air carrier through its subsidiaries, American Airlines, Inc (American) and its regional subsidiaries, Envoy Aviation Group Inc (Envoy), Piedmont Airlines, Inc (Piedmont) and PSA Airlines, Inc (PSA).

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:AAL

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