Sigma Planning Corp boosted its position in Southwest Airlines Company (NYSE:LUV) by 24.2% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 37,931 shares of the airline’s stock after buying an additional 7,380 shares during the period. Sigma Planning Corp’s holdings in Southwest Airlines were worth $2,357,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of LUV. 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 worth $128,000 after buying an additional 15 shares during the period. 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 worth $135,000 after buying an additional 154 shares during the period. National Pension Service purchased a new position in shares of Southwest Airlines during the second quarter worth about $141,000. 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 worth $152,000 after buying an additional 1,328 shares during the period. Finally, 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 worth $164,000 after buying an additional 75 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 80.34% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Southwest Airlines Company (NYSE:LUV) opened at 54.14 on Friday. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $59.56 and its 200-day moving average price is $57.18. Southwest Airlines Company has a 52-week low of $36.05 and a 52-week high of $64.39. The firm has a market capitalization of $32.41 billion, a PE ratio of 16.60 and a beta of 1.26.

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

Southwest Airlines declared that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock repurchase program on Wednesday, May 17th that authorizes the company to buyback $2.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the airline to repurchase up to 5.8% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are usually a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 14th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, August 24th will be paid a dividend of $0.125 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, August 22nd. This represents a $0.50 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.92%. Southwest Airlines’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 15.34%.

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A number of brokerages recently issued reports on LUV. Stifel Nicolaus restated a “buy” rating and issued a $80.00 target price on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research note on Friday, May 26th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $68.00 target price for the company in a research note on Tuesday, June 6th. Argus raised Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price target for the stock from $61.76 to $68.00 in a research report on Thursday, June 22nd. Wolfe Research downgraded Southwest Airlines from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $63.00 price target on the stock. in a research report on Monday, July 10th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Cowen and Company reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $67.00 price target on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research report on Friday, July 28th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating, eleven have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $65.78.

In other Southwest Airlines news, CFO Tammy Romo sold 8,322 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $59.15, for a total transaction of $492,246.30. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 87,387 shares in the company, valued at $5,168,941.05. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, Chairman Gary C. Kelly sold 51,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 17th. The stock was 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 $31,771,464.48. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 118,740 shares of company stock worth $6,923,568. Company insiders own 0.21% of the company’s stock.

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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