Essex Financial Services Inc. Trims Stock Holdings in Norfolk Southern Corp. (NYSE:NSC)

Essex Financial Services Inc. decreased its holdings in Norfolk Southern Corp. (NYSE:NSC) by 35.8% in the 3rd quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 8,178 shares of the railroad operator’s stock after selling 4,552 shares during the period. Essex Financial Services Inc.’s holdings in Norfolk Southern were worth $1,469,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other institutional investors and hedge funds have also bought and sold shares of the company. Bigelow Investment Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of Norfolk Southern by 1.0% in the second quarter. Bigelow Investment Advisors LLC now owns 5,409 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $1,078,000 after acquiring an additional 55 shares during the period. Contravisory Investment Management Inc. boosted its position in shares of Norfolk Southern by 18.4% in the second quarter. Contravisory Investment Management Inc. now owns 360 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $72,000 after acquiring an additional 56 shares during the period. Unison Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of Norfolk Southern by 0.4% in the second quarter. Unison Advisors LLC now owns 12,654 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $2,522,000 after acquiring an additional 56 shares during the period. First Financial Corp IN boosted its position in shares of Norfolk Southern by 8.5% in the third quarter. First Financial Corp IN now owns 765 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $138,000 after acquiring an additional 60 shares during the period. Finally, NEXT Financial Group Inc boosted its position in shares of Norfolk Southern by 2.6% in the third quarter. NEXT Financial Group Inc now owns 2,390 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $429,000 after acquiring an additional 60 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 72.95% of the company’s stock.

NSC has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. Barclays cut their price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern from $200.00 to $195.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, October 24th. TD Securities cut their price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern from $225.00 to $220.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, July 25th. Credit Suisse Group raised their price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern from $198.00 to $199.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 24th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Norfolk Southern from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 30th. Finally, Bank of America lowered shares of Norfolk Southern from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $198.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Wednesday, October 23rd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $204.29.

Norfolk Southern stock traded down $0.14 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $195.44. 895,529 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,670,462. Norfolk Southern Corp. has a one year low of $138.65 and a one year high of $211.46. The stock has a market cap of $50.53 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.55, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.94 and a beta of 1.37. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.73, a quick ratio of 0.63 and a current ratio of 0.73. The stock has a fifty day moving average price of $181.90 and a 200-day moving average price of $189.20.

Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, October 23rd. The railroad operator reported $2.49 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $2.57 by ($0.08). Norfolk Southern had a net margin of 23.98% and a return on equity of 18.22%. The company had revenue of $2.84 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.86 billion. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $2.52 earnings per share. Sell-side analysts predict that Norfolk Southern Corp. will post 10.23 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, December 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, November 1st will be paid a dividend of $0.94 per share. This represents a $3.76 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.92%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, October 31st. Norfolk Southern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 39.54%.

Norfolk Southern Profile

Norfolk Southern Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the rail transportation of raw materials, intermediate products, and finished goods. The company transports industrial products, including chemicals, agriculture, and metals and construction materials; and coal, automobiles, and automotive parts.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC)

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