Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a note issued to investors on Friday. The firm currently has a $347.00 price objective on the aerospace company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s target price indicates a potential upside of 10.11% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “As one of the major U.S. defense contractors, Northrop continues to enjoy strong presence in Air Force, Space & Cyber Security programs. The company maintains a strong balance sheet and steady cash flow that offer substantial financial flexibility. Also, recent budgetary amendments made by the Trump administration have been in favor of defense biggies like Northrop. During the third quarter, the company’s investments included capital expenditures of $650 million, up 6.9% annually. With the acquisition of Orbital ATK, Northrop will benefit from the former's rocket motors, missiles and electro-optical countermeasure product lines. However, higher operating expenses tend to drag down Northrop's profit margin.”

A number of other equities analysts also recently issued reports on the stock. Bank of America set a $350.00 price target on shares of Northrop Grumman and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, October 27th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded shares of Northrop Grumman from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and increased their price target for the company from $317.00 to $355.00 in a report on Tuesday, December 12th. Royal Bank of Canada set a $374.00 price target on shares of Northrop Grumman and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, November 16th. Deutsche Bank reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $325.00 price target (up previously from $285.00) on shares of Northrop Grumman in a report on Monday, October 2nd. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group set a $320.00 price objective on shares of Northrop Grumman and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 26th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and thirteen have issued a buy rating to the company. Northrop Grumman has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $302.21.

Shares of Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) traded up $5.60 on Friday, hitting $315.15. 706,139 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 795,039. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.96, a current ratio of 1.21 and a quick ratio of 1.05. The stock has a market cap of $54,860.00, a P/E ratio of 23.48, a PEG ratio of 3.03 and a beta of 0.69. Northrop Grumman has a 1-year low of $223.88 and a 1-year high of $315.71.

Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The aerospace company reported $3.68 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.92 by $0.76. The business had revenue of $6.53 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $6.33 billion. Northrop Grumman had a net margin of 9.88% and a return on equity of 41.69%. The business’s revenue was up 6.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $3.35 EPS. equities analysts forecast that Northrop Grumman will post 13.19 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Northrop Grumman news, VP Sid Ashworth sold 6,311 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, October 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $298.00, for a total transaction of $1,880,678.00. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 63,147 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $18,817,806. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, VP Denise M. Peppard sold 2,328 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $300.86, for a total transaction of $700,402.08. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 28,553 shares in the company, valued at $8,590,455.58. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 21,417 shares of company stock worth $6,365,189. 0.70% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Hanseatic Management Services Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Northrop Grumman by 12.8% during the 2nd quarter. Hanseatic Management Services Inc. now owns 423 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $109,000 after purchasing an additional 48 shares during the last quarter. People s United Financial Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Northrop Grumman by 9.2% during the 2nd quarter. People s United Financial Inc. now owns 475 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $122,000 after purchasing an additional 40 shares during the last quarter. Ropes Wealth Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Northrop Grumman during the 3rd quarter worth about $144,000. Quadrant Capital Group LLC boosted its stake in shares of Northrop Grumman by 7.8% during the 2nd quarter. Quadrant Capital Group LLC now owns 636 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $147,000 after purchasing an additional 46 shares during the last quarter. Finally, WFG Advisors LP boosted its stake in shares of Northrop Grumman by 4.9% during the 2nd quarter. WFG Advisors LP now owns 594 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $152,000 after purchasing an additional 28 shares during the last quarter. 81.10% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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Northrop Grumman Company Profile

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a global security company. The Company provides products, systems and solutions in autonomous systems; cyber; command, control, communications and computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C4ISR); strike, and logistics and modernization. The Company’s segments include Aerospace Systems, Mission Systems and Technology Services.

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Analyst Recommendations for Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC)

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