Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE:DAL) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Monday.

According to Zacks, “We are pleased with Delta’s performance with respect to Passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM: a key measure of unit revenue).The impressive performance is expected to continue. The metric is expected to increase in the band of of 2.5% to 4.5% (on a year-over-year basis) in the third quarter. We are also impressed by the company's efforts to reward its shareholders through dividends and buybacks. Efforts to reduce its debt levels also please us. However, high costs continue to hurt the bottom line. In fact, Delta underperformed in the second quarter mainly due to elevated costs. Labor costs have surged due to the various labor deals inked by the company. Consequently, shares of the company have underperformed its industry so far this year. High labor costs are likely to hurt the bottom line in the third quarter as well.”

Several other equities research analysts also recently weighed in on DAL. Vetr downgraded shares of Delta Air Lines from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $52.43 target price on the stock. in a research note on Tuesday, May 2nd. Citigroup Inc. upped their target price on shares of Delta Air Lines from $63.00 to $65.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, May 12th. Imperial Capital reaffirmed an “in-line” rating and set a $52.00 target price on shares of Delta Air Lines in a research note on Friday, May 19th. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Delta Air Lines in a research note on Friday, May 26th. Finally, Atlantic Securities initiated coverage on shares of Delta Air Lines in a research note on Tuesday, June 20th. They set an “overweight” rating and a $68.00 target price on the stock. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, sixteen have assigned a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $60.56.

Shares of Delta Air Lines (DAL) traded up 0.48% on Monday, hitting $47.45. 654,271 shares of the company were exchanged. The stock has a market capitalization of $34.54 billion, a PE ratio of 9.41 and a beta of 1.20. Delta Air Lines has a 52-week low of $35.90 and a 52-week high of $55.75. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $51.80 and its 200-day moving average is $49.44.

Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, July 13th. The transportation company reported $1.64 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.66 by $0.02. Delta Air Lines had a return on equity of 28.33% and a net margin of 9.30%. The business had revenue of $10.79 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $10.81 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.47 earnings per share. Delta Air Lines’s quarterly revenue was up 3.3% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts predict that Delta Air Lines will post $5.12 earnings per share for the current year.

WARNING: This piece was first published by The Cerbat Gem and is the property of of The Cerbat Gem. If you are viewing this piece on another site, it was stolen and republished in violation of U.S. & international copyright & trademark legislation. The legal version of this piece can be viewed at https://www.thecerbatgem.com/2017/08/21/delta-air-lines-inc-dal-downgraded-by-zacks-investment-research.html.

In related news, EVP Joanne D. Smith sold 3,700 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.00, for a total value of $199,800.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 77,223 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,170,042. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, VP Craig M. Meynard sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, July 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $55.26, for a total transaction of $276,300.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 7,437 shares in the company, valued at $410,968.62. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders purchased 389,000 shares of company stock worth $31,120 and sold 101,831 shares worth $5,489,982. Company insiders own 0.37% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. FNY Managed Accounts LLC bought a new position in Delta Air Lines during the first quarter worth approximately $100,000. TrimTabs Asset Management LLC increased its position in Delta Air Lines by 88.8% in the first quarter. TrimTabs Asset Management LLC now owns 2,416 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $111,000 after buying an additional 1,136 shares during the period. Advisory Services Network LLC bought a new position in Delta Air Lines during the first quarter worth approximately $114,000. Mountain Capital Investment Advisors Inc bought a new position in Delta Air Lines during the second quarter worth approximately $114,000. Finally, Fjarde AP Fonden Fourth Swedish National Pension Fund increased its position in Delta Air Lines by 40.3% in the first quarter. Fjarde AP Fonden Fourth Swedish National Pension Fund now owns 2,761 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $127,000 after buying an additional 793 shares during the period. 87.88% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Delta Air Lines Company Profile

Delta Air Lines, Inc provides scheduled air transportation for passengers and cargo throughout the United States and across the world. The Company’s segments include Airline and Refinery. The Company’s route network is centered around a system of hub, international gateway and airports that the Company operates in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, London-Heathrow, Los Angeles, Minneapolis-St.

Analyst Recommendations for Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL)

Receive News & Stock Ratings for Delta Air Lines Inc. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Delta Air Lines Inc. and related stocks with our FREE daily email newsletter.