Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. The brokerage currently has a $101.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price objective points to a potential upside of 12.60% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Kansas City Southern, with its wide cross-country network, remains focused on growing opportunities in cross-border intermodal businesses between the U.S. and Mexico. The company has a dominant position on the U.S.-Mexico routes. Moreover, the company’s consistent efforts to expand its business, its ability to hike prices and efforts to reduce costs continue to impress. We are also impressed by the company's efforts to reward its shareholders. However, like most railroads, the company has been adversely affected by weakness in the energy segment. The Mexican peso depreciation is another headwind. However, the company's top line is expected to improve in the second half of the year.”

Other analysts have also issued research reports about the stock. TheStreet raised shares of Kansas City Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, July 28th. Citigroup Inc. raised their price objective on shares of Kansas City Southern from $108.00 to $109.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 20th. Bank of America Corp. reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Kansas City Southern in a report on Tuesday, July 12th. Loop Capital reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $115.00 price objective on shares of Kansas City Southern in a report on Monday, August 15th. Finally, Barclays PLC raised shares of Kansas City Southern from an “underweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and raised their price objective for the stock from $94.00 to $99.00 in a report on Monday, September 12th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating, eleven have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $100.82.

Shares of Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU) opened at 89.70 on Tuesday. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $95.97 and its 200 day moving average is $91.95. Kansas City Southern has a 52 week low of $62.20 and a 52 week high of $100.69. The firm has a market capitalization of $9.69 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.52 and a beta of 1.13.

Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 19th. The company reported $1.22 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.08 by $0.14. The company earned $569 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $572.20 million. Kansas City Southern had a net margin of 21.13% and a return on equity of 12.00%. Equities research analysts forecast that Kansas City Southern will post $4.79 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 5th. Investors of record on Monday, September 12th will be issued a dividend of $0.33 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 8th. This represents a $1.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.47%. Kansas City Southern’s payout ratio is 28.82%.

In other Kansas City Southern news, CFO Michael W. Upchurch sold 5,367 shares of Kansas City Southern stock in a transaction on Friday, July 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $95.18, for a total value of $510,831.06. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 16,808 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,599,785.44. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, CEO Patrick J. Ottensmeyer sold 5,000 shares of Kansas City Southern stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $95.62, for a total transaction of $478,100.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 90,228 shares in the company, valued at $8,627,601.36. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.86% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Macquarie Group Ltd. raised its stake in shares of Kansas City Southern by 10.4% in the second quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 44,750 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,032,000 after buying an additional 4,200 shares during the last quarter. Kentucky Retirement Systems Insurance Trust Fund acquired a new stake in shares of Kansas City Southern during the second quarter valued at about $393,000. Kentucky Retirement Systems acquired a new stake in shares of Kansas City Southern during the second quarter valued at about $827,000. Nomura Holdings Inc. raised its stake in shares of Kansas City Southern by 10,267.3% in the second quarter. Nomura Holdings Inc. now owns 417,699 shares of the company’s stock valued at $37,740,000 after buying an additional 413,670 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Mason Street Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Kansas City Southern during the second quarter valued at about $1,310,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 91.33% of the company’s stock.

Kansas City Southern Company Profile

Kansas City Southern (KCS) is a transportation holding company with domestic and international rail operations in North America that are focused on the north/south freight corridor connecting commercial and industrial markets in the central United States with industrial cities in Mexico. The Company controls and owns The Kansas City Southern Railway Company (KCSR), a United States Class I railroad that serves a 10-state region in the midwest and southeast regions of the United States and has the shortest north/south rail route between Kansas City, Missouri and several key ports along the Gulf of Mexico in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas.

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