MetLife Investment Advisors LLC trimmed its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern Corp. (NYSE:NSC) by 2.1% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The firm owned 81,466 shares of the railroad operator’s stock after selling 1,708 shares during the quarter. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC’s holdings in Norfolk Southern were worth $14,705,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Other large investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Verition Fund Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern by 362.9% during the 2nd quarter. Verition Fund Management LLC now owns 21,405 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $3,229,000 after purchasing an additional 16,781 shares during the period. Independent Advisor Alliance raised its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern by 8.6% during the 2nd quarter. Independent Advisor Alliance now owns 5,404 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $768,000 after purchasing an additional 427 shares during the period. Virtu Financial LLC raised its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern by 57.6% during the 3rd quarter. Virtu Financial LLC now owns 10,153 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $1,832,000 after purchasing an additional 3,712 shares during the period. Provident Investment Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern by 100.0% during the 2nd quarter. Provident Investment Management Inc. now owns 7,434 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $1,122,000 after purchasing an additional 3,717 shares during the period. Finally, PointState Capital LP bought a new position in Norfolk Southern in the 2nd quarter worth about $63,296,000. Institutional investors own 72.98% of the company’s stock.
In other news, COO Michael Joseph Wheeler sold 801 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $172.55, for a total value of $138,212.55. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 9,406 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,623,005.30. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. 0.23% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 24th. The railroad operator reported $2.52 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.44 by $0.08. Norfolk Southern had a return on equity of 15.12% and a net margin of 52.82%. The firm had revenue of $2.95 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.90 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $1.75 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 10.4% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities research analysts expect that Norfolk Southern Corp. will post 9.26 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, December 10th. Stockholders of record on Friday, November 2nd were issued a $0.80 dividend. This represents a $3.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.12%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, November 1st. Norfolk Southern’s payout ratio is currently 48.41%.
A number of equities analysts have weighed in on the company. Morgan Stanley upped their target price on Norfolk Southern from $113.00 to $115.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research note on Monday, October 29th. Zacks Investment Research lowered Norfolk Southern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, November 15th. Loop Capital set a $188.00 target price on Norfolk Southern and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, November 26th. Stifel Nicolaus upgraded Norfolk Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $189.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, October 24th. Finally, Robert W. Baird decreased their target price on Norfolk Southern from $186.00 to $181.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, October 25th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. Norfolk Southern has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $176.11.
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Norfolk Southern Profile
Norfolk Southern Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the rail transportation of raw materials, intermediate products, and finished goods. It also transports overseas freight through various Atlantic and Gulf Coast ports, as well as coal, automotive, and industrial products; and provides commuter passenger services.
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