Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) Downgraded to Hold at Argus

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Argus cut shares of Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note released on Tuesday, BenzingaRatingsTable reports.

A number of other equities analysts also recently weighed in on the stock. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Southwest Airlines from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Thursday, May 16th. Morgan Stanley dropped their target price on shares of Southwest Airlines from $68.00 to $64.00 and set an overweight rating for the company in a research note on Monday, May 20th. Imperial Capital reaffirmed an in-line rating and issued a $55.00 target price (up from $52.00) on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research note on Friday, April 26th. ValuEngine raised shares of Southwest Airlines from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 16th. Finally, Cowen reaffirmed a market perform rating and issued a $57.00 target price (up from $55.00) on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research note on Friday, July 26th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $57.52.

Shares of NYSE LUV opened at $49.92 on Tuesday. Southwest Airlines has a 1-year low of $44.28 and a 1-year high of $64.02. The company has a market capitalization of $27.12 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.77, a PEG ratio of 1.09 and a beta of 1.50. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.37, a quick ratio of 0.59 and a current ratio of 0.64. The business has a 50-day moving average of $51.75.

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, July 25th. The airline reported $1.37 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.35 by $0.02. Southwest Airlines had a net margin of 10.73% and a return on equity of 24.12%. The company had revenue of $5.91 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.94 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.26 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up 2.9% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, research analysts expect that Southwest Airlines will post 4.35 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, September 11th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, August 21st will be given a dividend of $0.18 per share. This represents a $0.72 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.44%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, August 20th. Southwest Airlines’s dividend payout ratio is 16.98%.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Boston Partners grew its holdings in Southwest Airlines by 13.9% during the first quarter. Boston Partners now owns 9,998,417 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $519,018,000 after purchasing an additional 1,219,028 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC grew its holdings in Southwest Airlines by 13.7% during the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 6,706,799 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $311,306,000 after purchasing an additional 809,418 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can grew its holdings in Southwest Airlines by 2.5% during the second quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 6,292,464 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $319,532,000 after purchasing an additional 154,845 shares during the period. Northern Trust Corp grew its holdings in Southwest Airlines by 3.9% during the first quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 5,507,833 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $285,912,000 after purchasing an additional 204,758 shares during the period. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its holdings in Southwest Airlines by 37.7% during the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 4,920,617 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $228,736,000 after purchasing an additional 1,348,168 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 84.25% of the company’s stock.

Southwest Airlines Company Profile

Southwest Airlines Co operates a passenger airline that provides scheduled air transportation services in the United States and near-international markets. As of December 31, 2018, the company operated a total of 750 Boeing 737 aircraft; and served 99 destinations in 40 states, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, as well as 10 near-international countries, including Mexico, Jamaica, the Bahamas, Aruba, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Belize, Cuba, the Cayman Islands, and Turks and Caicos.

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Analyst Recommendations for Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV)

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