Bessemer Group Inc. increased its stake in Southwest Airlines Company (NYSE:LUV) by 0.3% during the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 91,881 shares of the airline’s stock after buying an additional 230 shares during the period. Bessemer Group Inc.’s holdings in Southwest Airlines were worth $5,710,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of LUV. National Pension Service bought a new position in shares of Southwest Airlines during the second quarter valued at about $141,000. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America raised its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 0.6% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 2,374 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $128,000 after buying an additional 15 shares in the last quarter. Van ECK Associates Corp raised its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 6.6% in the first quarter. Van ECK Associates Corp now owns 2,502 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $135,000 after buying an additional 154 shares in the last quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. raised its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 2.9% in the second quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. now owns 2,632 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $164,000 after buying an additional 75 shares in the last quarter. Finally, TrimTabs Asset Management LLC raised its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 88.9% in the first quarter. TrimTabs Asset Management LLC now owns 2,821 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $152,000 after buying an additional 1,328 shares in the last quarter. 80.34% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of Southwest Airlines Company (LUV) opened at 56.58 on Monday. Southwest Airlines Company has a one year low of $35.43 and a one year high of $64.39. The stock has a market cap of $33.87 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.35 and a beta of 1.26. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $60.75 and a 200 day moving average of $57.04.

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The airline reported $1.24 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.20 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $5.74 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.73 billion. Southwest Airlines had a net margin of 9.63% and a return on equity of 26.07%. Southwest Airlines’s revenue was up 6.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $1.19 EPS. On average, analysts forecast that Southwest Airlines Company will post $3.80 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 14th. Investors of record on Thursday, August 24th will be paid a $0.125 dividend. This represents a $0.50 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.88%. Southwest Airlines’s payout ratio is 15.34%.

Southwest Airlines declared that its board has initiated a stock buyback plan on Wednesday, May 17th that authorizes the company to buyback $2.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the airline to reacquire up to 5.8% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are often a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

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Several brokerages recently issued reports on LUV. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Southwest Airlines from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 1st. Cowen and Company reissued a “buy” rating and set a $67.00 target price on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research note on Friday, July 28th. Vetr raised shares of Southwest Airlines from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $64.53 target price on the stock in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Sanford C. Bernstein reissued an “outperform” rating and set a $70.00 target price on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research note on Thursday, July 13th. Finally, BidaskClub lowered shares of Southwest Airlines from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 12th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating, eleven have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $65.78.

In other Southwest Airlines news, EVP Jeff Lamb sold 19,800 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $61.00, for a total transaction of $1,207,800.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 92,468 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,640,548. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Gary C. Kelly sold 51,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $57.06, for a total transaction of $2,910,060.00. Following the transaction, the chairman now owns 556,808 shares in the company, valued at approximately $31,771,464.48. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 118,740 shares of company stock worth $6,923,568. 0.21% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Southwest Airlines Company Profile

Southwest Airlines Co (Southwest) operates Southwest Airlines, a passenger airline that provides scheduled air transportation in the United States and near-international markets. The Company provides point-to-point service. The Company offers ancillary service offerings, such as Southwest’s EarlyBird Check-In and transportation of pets and unaccompanied minors, in accordance with Southwest’s respective policies.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV)

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