Marten Transport (NASDAQ:MRTN) Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research to Buy

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Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Marten Transport (NASDAQ:MRTN) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report released on Wednesday, Zacks.com reports. Zacks Investment Research currently has $23.00 target price on the transportation company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Marten Transport, Ltd. is a long-haul truckload carrier providing protective service and time- sensitive transportation in the United States. The company specializes in transporting and distributing food and other consumer packaged goods that require a temperature-controlled or insulated environment. Marten operates through these featured services – Truckload, Dedicated, Intermodal and Brokerage. Marten Transport offers service in the United States, Canada and Mexico, concentrating on expedited movements for high-volume customers. Marten’s common stock is traded on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol MRTN and is headquartered in Mondovi, Wisconsin. “

A number of other research analysts have also recently commented on MRTN. BidaskClub cut Marten Transport from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Thursday, November 21st. KeyCorp upgraded Marten Transport from a sector weight rating to an overweight rating and set a $25.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Monday, September 9th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $22.00.

Marten Transport stock traded down $0.20 during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $21.12. 4,065 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 143,824. The business’s 50 day simple moving average is $21.64 and its two-hundred day simple moving average is $19.94. The company has a market capitalization of $1.14 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.11 and a beta of 1.43. Marten Transport has a 12-month low of $15.39 and a 12-month high of $22.80.

Marten Transport (NASDAQ:MRTN) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 17th. The transportation company reported $0.30 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.28 by $0.02. Marten Transport had a return on equity of 10.40% and a net margin of 7.36%. The company had revenue of $214.97 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $208.10 million. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.28 earnings per share. Marten Transport’s revenue was up 7.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts forecast that Marten Transport will post 1.1 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 27th. Stockholders of record on Friday, December 13th will be given a dividend of $0.03 per share. This represents a $0.12 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.57%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, December 12th. Marten Transport’s payout ratio is 12.00%.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC increased its holdings in Marten Transport by 1,073.0% in the third quarter. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC now owns 5,466 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $114,000 after buying an additional 5,000 shares during the last quarter. M&T Bank Corp bought a new stake in Marten Transport during the second quarter valued at about $193,000. Van Hulzen Asset Management LLC bought a new stake in Marten Transport during the third quarter valued at about $227,000. Capital Fund Management S.A. boosted its holdings in Marten Transport by 19.3% during the second quarter. Capital Fund Management S.A. now owns 14,200 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $258,000 after acquiring an additional 2,300 shares during the period. Finally, Marshall Wace LLP bought a new stake in Marten Transport during the second quarter valued at about $270,000. 70.25% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Marten Transport Company Profile

Marten Transport, Ltd. operates as a temperature-sensitive truckload carrier for shippers in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. It operates through four segments: Truckload, Dedicated, Intermodal, and Brokerage. The Truckload segment transports food and other consumer packaged goods that require a temperature-controlled or insulated environment.

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