Southwest Airlines Company (NYSE:LUV) Downgraded by BidaskClub

BidaskClub cut shares of Southwest Airlines Company (NYSE:LUV) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report published on Monday, July 24th.

Several other analysts also recently weighed in on LUV. Vetr upgraded Southwest Airlines from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $60.24 target price for the company in a research report on Thursday, March 30th. Morgan Stanley restated an overweight rating on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research note on Friday, April 7th. Cowen and Company raised their price target on Southwest Airlines from $57.00 to $58.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 11th. Imperial Capital raised their price target on Southwest Airlines from $63.00 to $68.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a research note on Friday, April 28th. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG raised their price target on Southwest Airlines from $63.00 to $65.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Friday, April 28th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating, twelve have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $65.66.

Southwest Airlines (LUV) opened at 53.17 on Monday. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $58.49 and its 200 day moving average is $57.27. Southwest Airlines has a 1-year low of $36.05 and a 1-year high of $64.39. The firm has a market capitalization of $31.83 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.30 and a beta of 1.26.

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The airline reported $1.24 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.20 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $5.74 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.73 billion. Southwest Airlines had a return on equity of 26.07% and a net margin of 9.63%. Southwest Airlines’s revenue was up 6.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.19 earnings per share. Analysts predict that Southwest Airlines will post $3.80 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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Southwest Airlines announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock buyback program on Wednesday, May 17th that authorizes the company to buyback $2.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the airline to buy up to 5.8% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 14th. Investors of record on Thursday, August 24th will be paid a dividend of $0.125 per share. This represents a $0.50 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.94%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, August 22nd. Southwest Airlines’s payout ratio is 15.34%.

In other news, EVP Jeff Lamb sold 19,800 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.00, for a total value of $1,207,800.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 92,468 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,640,548. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CFO Tammy Romo sold 8,322 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $59.15, for a total value of $492,246.30. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 87,387 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,168,941.05. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 47,218 shares of company stock worth $2,838,204. 0.21% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. GSA Capital Partners LLP boosted its stake in Southwest Airlines by 22.3% in the fourth quarter. GSA Capital Partners LLP now owns 7,142 shares of the airline’s stock worth $356,000 after buying an additional 1,303 shares during the last quarter. Ibex Wealth Advisors boosted its stake in Southwest Airlines by 12.4% in the fourth quarter. Ibex Wealth Advisors now owns 26,296 shares of the airline’s stock worth $1,343,000 after buying an additional 2,904 shares during the last quarter. Wealthfront Inc. boosted its stake in Southwest Airlines by 14.9% in the fourth quarter. Wealthfront Inc. now owns 12,381 shares of the airline’s stock worth $617,000 after buying an additional 1,610 shares during the last quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. boosted its stake in Southwest Airlines by 37.2% in the fourth quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 1,179,576 shares of the airline’s stock worth $58,791,000 after buying an additional 319,866 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Pegasus Partners Ltd. boosted its stake in Southwest Airlines by 1.1% in the fourth quarter. Pegasus Partners Ltd. now owns 26,131 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $1,302,000 after buying an additional 296 shares in the last quarter. 80.58% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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.

Analyst Recommendations for Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV)

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