BlackRock Inc. reduced its position in Southwest Airlines Company (NYSE:LUV) by 12.9% in the second quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 30,482,874 shares of the airline’s stock after selling 4,500,445 shares during the quarter. BlackRock Inc. owned approximately 5.09% of Southwest Airlines worth $1,894,207,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Other large investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BDO Wealth Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Southwest Airlines in the second quarter worth $102,000. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America increased its position in 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 last quarter. Pittenger & Anderson Inc. increased its position in Southwest Airlines by 13.5% in the second quarter. Pittenger & Anderson Inc. now owns 2,100 shares of the airline’s stock worth $130,000 after buying an additional 250 shares during the last quarter. Van ECK Associates Corp increased its position in 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 last quarter. Finally, National Pension Service purchased a new stake in Southwest Airlines in the second quarter worth $141,000. 79.42% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Southwest Airlines Company (LUV) traded up 0.31% during midday trading on Friday, reaching $54.52. The company had a trading volume of 2,250,896 shares. Southwest Airlines Company has a 52 week low of $36.31 and a 52 week high of $64.39. The company has a market capitalization of $32.63 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.72 and a beta of 1.29. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $53.80 and a 200-day moving average price of $56.94.

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 the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.20 by $0.04. Southwest Airlines had a return on equity of 26.07% and a net margin of 9.63%. The business had revenue of $5.74 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.73 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $1.19 EPS. Southwest Airlines’s revenue for the quarter was up 6.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that Southwest Airlines Company will post $3.73 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 14th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, August 24th were paid a $0.125 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, August 22nd. This represents a $0.50 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.92%. Southwest Airlines’s payout ratio is presently 15.34%.

A number of analysts have issued reports on LUV shares. BidaskClub raised Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, June 20th. Zacks Investment Research raised Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $67.00 price target for the company in a report on Tuesday, June 13th. ValuEngine raised Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 2nd. Vetr raised Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $63.80 price target for the company in a report on Monday, June 5th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $80.00 price target on shares of Southwest Airlines in a report on Friday, May 26th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating, twelve have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $67.77.

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In other Southwest Airlines news, Director William H. Dr Cunningham purchased 4,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 11th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $54.00 per share, for a total transaction of $243,000.00. Following the purchase, the director now owns 66,969 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,616,326. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Corporate insiders own 0.21% of the company’s stock.

About Southwest Airlines

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.

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

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