Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Marten Transport, Ltd. (NASDAQ:MRTN) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report released on Wednesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Marten Transport, Ltd. is a long-haul truckload carrier providing protective service and time- sensitive transportation. Protective service transportation means temperature controlled or insulated carriage of temperature-sensitive materials and general commodities. “

Separately, Stifel Nicolaus upped their target price on shares of Marten Transport from $22.00 to $25.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 25th.

Shares of Marten Transport (MRTN) traded down 0.55% during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $27.05. 16,050 shares of the stock were exchanged. The firm has a market cap of $884.18 million, a P/E ratio of 26.52 and a beta of 1.28. Marten Transport has a 12-month low of $18.70 and a 12-month high of $28.25. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $25.33 and a 200 day moving average of $24.17. Shares of Marten Transport are scheduled to split on Monday, July 10th. The 5-3 split was announced on Thursday, June 15th. The newly created shares will be issued to shareholders after the market closes on Friday, July 7th.

Marten Transport (NASDAQ:MRTN) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, April 20th. The transportation company reported $0.25 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.04. The business had revenue of $173.20 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $168.87 million. Marten Transport had a net margin of 4.91% and a return on equity of 7.74%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 7.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.25 earnings per share. Equities analysts forecast that Marten Transport will post $1.03 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 30th. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 16th will be paid a dividend of $0.025 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, June 14th. This represents a $0.10 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.37%. Marten Transport’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 9.80%.

In other Marten Transport news, Chairman Randolph L. Marten sold 50,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, June 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.51, for a total transaction of $1,275,500.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider John H. Turner sold 4,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, June 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.59, for a total transaction of $102,360.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 23.00% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Bank of Montreal Can increased its position in Marten Transport by 376.0% in the first quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 4,355 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $101,000 after buying an additional 3,440 shares during the period. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. increased its position in Marten Transport by 2.4% in the first quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 4,688 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $111,000 after buying an additional 108 shares during the period. Mason Street Advisors LLC increased its position in Marten Transport by 7.2% in the first quarter. Mason Street Advisors LLC now owns 5,418 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $127,000 after buying an additional 365 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. increased its position in Marten Transport by 17.3% in the first quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 9,104 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $213,000 after buying an additional 1,342 shares during the period. Finally, Louisiana State Employees Retirement System increased its position in Marten Transport by 1.1% in the first quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 9,400 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $220,000 after buying an additional 100 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 68.59% of the company’s stock.

Marten Transport Company Profile

Marten Transport, Ltd. is a temperature-sensitive truckload carrier. The Company focuses on transporting and distributing food and other consumer-packaged goods that require a temperature-controlled or insulated environment. The Company operates through four segments: Truckload, Dedicated, Intermodal and Brokerage.

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