Wall Street brokerages expect that Southwest Airlines Company (NYSE:LUV) will report $1.20 earnings per share (EPS) for the current fiscal quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Four analysts have issued estimates for Southwest Airlines’ earnings, with estimates ranging from $1.17 to $1.23. Southwest Airlines posted earnings of $1.19 per share in the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year over year growth rate of 0.8%. The business is scheduled to announce its next earnings results before the market opens on Thursday, July 27th.
According to Zacks, analysts expect that Southwest Airlines will report full year earnings of $3.90 per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.70 to $4.11. For the next financial year, analysts expect that the firm will post earnings of $4.80 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $4.00 to $5.65. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share averages are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that follow Southwest Airlines.
Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 27th. The airline reported $0.61 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.62 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $4.88 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.91 billion. Southwest Airlines had a net margin of 10.16% and a return on equity of 26.75%. The business’s revenue was up 1.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $0.88 EPS.
A number of research firms have recently commented on LUV. Wolfe Research cut Southwest Airlines from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $63.00 target price on the stock. in a research report on Monday, July 10th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Morgan Stanley restated an “overweight” rating and set a $66.00 target price (up from $65.00) on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research report on Monday, July 10th. BidaskClub cut Southwest Airlines from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 12th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $70.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, July 4th. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $70.00 price objective on shares of Southwest Airlines in a report on Thursday, July 13th. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fourteen have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $63.80.
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In other Southwest Airlines news, Chairman Gary C. Kelly sold 51,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $57.06, for a total value of $2,910,060.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now owns 556,808 shares in the company, valued at $31,771,464.48. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Jeff Lamb sold 19,800 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.00, for a total transaction of $1,207,800.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 92,468 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,640,548. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 118,740 shares of company stock valued at $6,923,568. Insiders own 0.18% of the company’s stock.
Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of LUV. National Pension Service acquired a new position in Southwest Airlines during the second quarter valued at approximately $141,000. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America increased its position in Southwest Airlines by 0.6% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 2,374 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $128,000 after buying an additional 15 shares during the period. Van ECK Associates Corp increased its position in Southwest Airlines by 6.6% in the first quarter. Van ECK Associates Corp now owns 2,502 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $135,000 after buying an additional 154 shares during the period. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. increased its position in Southwest Airlines by 2.9% in the second quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. now owns 2,632 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $164,000 after buying an additional 75 shares during the period. Finally, TrimTabs Asset Management LLC increased its position in Southwest Airlines by 88.9% in the first quarter. TrimTabs Asset Management LLC now owns 2,821 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $152,000 after buying an additional 1,328 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 79.69% of the company’s stock.
Shares of Southwest Airlines (NYSE LUV) traded down 0.78% during trading on Friday, hitting $59.81. The stock had a trading volume of 3,354,626 shares. Southwest Airlines has a 12 month low of $35.42 and a 12 month high of $64.39. The company has a market cap of $36.16 billion, a PE ratio of 17.94 and a beta of 1.29. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $61.20 and a 200 day moving average of $56.77.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, June 28th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, June 7th were paid a $0.125 dividend. This is an increase from Southwest Airlines’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.10. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, June 5th. This represents a $0.50 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.84%. Southwest Airlines’s payout ratio is 15.11%.
Southwest Airlines declared that its board has approved a stock buyback program on Wednesday, May 17th that allows the company to repurchase $2.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the airline to reacquire up to 5.8% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.
Southwest Airlines Company Profile
Southwest Airlines Co (Southwest) operates Southwest Airlines, a passenger airline that provides scheduled air transportation in the United States and near-international markets. The Company provides point-to-point service. The Company offers ancillary service offerings, such as Southwest’s EarlyBird Check-In and transportation of pets and unaccompanied minors, in accordance with Southwest’s respective policies.
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