NWQ Investment Management Company LLC reduced its stake in shares of Southwest Airlines Co (NYSE:LUV) by 2.1% in the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 1,139,671 shares of the airline’s stock after selling 24,001 shares during the quarter. Southwest Airlines accounts for approximately 1.0% of NWQ Investment Management Company LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 26th biggest position. NWQ Investment Management Company LLC owned 0.19% of Southwest Airlines worth $74,591,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
A number of other large investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Raymond James & Associates raised its stake in Southwest Airlines by 19.6% during the 4th quarter. Raymond James & Associates now owns 298,188 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $19,516,000 after purchasing an additional 48,943 shares during the last quarter. Two Sigma Securities LLC acquired a new position in Southwest Airlines during the 4th quarter valued at $289,000. Two Sigma Advisers LP acquired a new position in Southwest Airlines during the 4th quarter valued at $2,382,000. Stone Ridge Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in Southwest Airlines during the 4th quarter valued at $2,126,000. Finally, Credit Capital Investments LLC acquired a new position in Southwest Airlines during the 4th quarter valued at $327,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 80.05% of the company’s stock.
Several equities analysts recently commented on the stock. Bank of America cut shares of Southwest Airlines from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $73.00 target price for the company. in a research note on Tuesday, January 9th. Vetr upgraded shares of Southwest Airlines from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $60.23 target price for the company in a research note on Tuesday, December 26th. Atlantic Securities upgraded shares of Southwest Airlines from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and upped their target price for the company from $48.71 to $71.00 in a research note on Thursday, December 14th. ValuEngine cut shares of Southwest Airlines from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 3rd. Finally, Cowen reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $67.00 target price on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research note on Tuesday, January 9th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and fourteen have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $67.83.
Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, January 25th. The airline reported $0.77 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.76 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $5.27 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.25 billion. Southwest Airlines had a net margin of 16.48% and a return on equity of 23.43%. The business’s revenue was up 3.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.75 EPS. sell-side analysts forecast that Southwest Airlines Co will post 4.96 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, March 28th. Investors of record on Wednesday, March 7th will be given a dividend of $0.125 per share. This represents a $0.50 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.84%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, March 6th. Southwest Airlines’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 14.49%.
In related news, Director John T. Montford sold 1,695 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $63.27, for a total transaction of $107,242.65. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 23,098 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,461,410.46. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director William H. Dr Cunningham bought 3,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, February 12th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $56.25 per share, with a total value of $196,875.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 70,469 shares in the company, valued at $3,963,881.25. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 133,099 shares of company stock valued at $7,922,932 in the last quarter. 0.21% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
About Southwest Airlines
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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