Heartland Express Inc. (NASDAQ:HTLD) was the recipient of a large increase in short interest in August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 7,725,854 shares, an increase of 21.4% from the August 15th total of 6,365,828 shares. Approximately 17.6% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 434,893 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 17.8 days.

In other news, EVP John P. Cosaert sold 4,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $19.85, for a total transaction of $79,400.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 64,814 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,286,557.90. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Insiders own 45.30% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in HTLD. Nuance Investments LLC raised its position in shares of Heartland Express by 775.6% in the second quarter. Nuance Investments LLC now owns 1,674,945 shares of the company’s stock valued at $29,127,000 after buying an additional 1,483,664 shares in the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. raised its position in shares of Heartland Express by 15.8% in the second quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 9,221,141 shares of the company’s stock valued at $160,356,000 after buying an additional 1,259,396 shares in the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised its position in shares of Heartland Express by 75.7% in the second quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 422,027 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,339,000 after buying an additional 181,882 shares in the last quarter. Weiss Multi Strategy Advisers LLC raised its position in shares of Heartland Express by 1,081.5% in the second quarter. Weiss Multi Strategy Advisers LLC now owns 139,787 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,431,000 after buying an additional 127,956 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Kennedy Capital Management Inc. raised its position in shares of Heartland Express by 27.0% in the first quarter. Kennedy Capital Management Inc. now owns 480,230 shares of the company’s stock valued at $8,908,000 after buying an additional 102,210 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 61.06% of the company’s stock.

Heartland Express (NASDAQ:HTLD) opened at 18.94 on Wednesday. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $19.15 and a 200-day moving average price of $18.32. The stock has a market cap of $1.58 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.63 and a beta of 0.37. Heartland Express has a 12 month low of $15.36 and a 12 month high of $21.95.

Heartland Express (NASDAQ:HTLD) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.20 EPS for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.20. The firm had revenue of $160.80 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $167.94 million. Heartland Express had a return on equity of 13.14% and a net margin of 9.24%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 16.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.27 earnings per share. Equities research analysts expect that Heartland Express will post $0.71 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 3rd. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 23rd will be paid a dividend of $0.02 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, September 21st. This represents a $0.08 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.42%. Heartland Express’s dividend payout ratio is currently 10.81%.

HTLD has been the topic of a number of research reports. FBR & Co dropped their target price on shares of Heartland Express from $20.00 to $18.00 in a report on Thursday, May 26th. Nomura restated a “buy” rating and set a $14.00 target price (down previously from $17.00) on shares of Heartland Express in a report on Friday, August 26th. Deutsche Bank AG restated a “hold” rating on shares of Heartland Express in a report on Thursday, August 25th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Heartland Express from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, August 18th. Finally, BB&T Corp. cut shares of Heartland Express from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 22nd. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $17.00.

About Heartland Express

Heartland Express, Inc (Heartland) is a holding company. The Company owns all of the stock of Heartland Express Inc of Iowa, Gordon Trucking, Inc, Heartland Express Services, Inc, Heartland Express Maintenance Services, Inc and A & M Express, Inc It provides transportation services to shippers spanning from Washington to Florida and New England to California, as well as parts of Canada.

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:HTLD

Receive News & Ratings for Heartland Express Inc. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Heartland Express Inc. and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.