Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) Rating Increased to Buy at Goldman Sachs Group

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) was upgraded by investment analysts at Goldman Sachs Group from a “sell” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Sunday, The Fly reports.

Other analysts also recently issued research reports about the company. Seaport Global Securities started coverage on Southwest Airlines in a research note on Wednesday, June 17th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $44.00 price target on the stock. Deutsche Bank decreased their price objective on Southwest Airlines from $45.00 to $44.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Wednesday, April 29th. Susquehanna Bancshares upgraded Southwest Airlines from a “neutral” rating to a “positive” rating and set a $41.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, April 21st. Stifel Nicolaus raised shares of Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and raised their price target for the stock from $40.00 to $50.00 in a research note on Wednesday, April 29th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group raised shares of Southwest Airlines from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and boosted their price objective for the stock from $35.00 to $45.00 in a research report on Friday, June 12th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating, fifteen have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Southwest Airlines has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $49.75.

NYSE LUV traded down $1.01 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $31.96. 23,936,947 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 26,206,100. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38, a quick ratio of 0.64 and a current ratio of 0.69. The company has a market capitalization of $16.26 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.40 and a beta of 1.26. The company’s 50-day moving average is $31.99 and its two-hundred day moving average is $42.80. Southwest Airlines has a one year low of $22.47 and a one year high of $58.83.

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, April 28th. The airline reported ($0.15) earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.48) by $0.33. Southwest Airlines had a net margin of 8.46% and a return on equity of 18.92%. The company had revenue of $4.23 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.55 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.70 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 17.8% compared to the same quarter last year. Research analysts predict that Southwest Airlines will post -4.8 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other Southwest Airlines news, major shareholder Berkshire Hathaway Inc sold 1,076,267 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, April 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $32.67, for a total transaction of $35,161,642.89. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, EVP Andrew M. Watterson sold 8,275 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $31.85, for a total value of $263,558.75. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 52,911 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,685,215.35. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.28% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Atlas Private Wealth Management bought a new stake in shares of Southwest Airlines during the fourth quarter worth approximately $30,000. Islay Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Southwest Airlines during the fourth quarter worth approximately $32,000. Bray Capital Advisors bought a new stake in shares of Southwest Airlines during the first quarter worth approximately $30,000. Arkadios Wealth Advisors boosted its holdings in shares of Southwest Airlines by 426.3% during the first quarter. Arkadios Wealth Advisors now owns 900 shares of the airline’s stock worth $32,000 after acquiring an additional 729 shares during the period. Finally, RPG Investment Advisory LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Southwest Airlines by 131.3% during the first quarter. RPG Investment Advisory LLC now owns 925 shares of the airline’s stock worth $33,000 after acquiring an additional 525 shares during the period. 82.84% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Southwest Airlines Company Profile

Southwest Airlines Co operates a passenger airline that provides scheduled air transportation services in the United States and near-international markets. As of December 31, 2018, the company operated a total of 750 Boeing 737 aircraft; and served 99 destinations in 40 states, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, as well as 10 near-international countries, including Mexico, Jamaica, the Bahamas, Aruba, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Belize, Cuba, the Cayman Islands, and Turks and Caicos.

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Analyst Recommendations for Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV)

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