Heartland Express, Inc. (NASDAQ:HTLD) EVP John P. Cosaert sold 7,146 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $22.54, for a total value of $161,070.84. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 57,668 shares in the company, valued at $1,299,836.72. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link.

Heartland Express, Inc. (NASDAQ:HTLD) opened at 22.33 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.86 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 34.35 and a beta of 0.53. Heartland Express, Inc. has a one year low of $17.06 and a one year high of $22.98. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $21.49 and a 200-day moving average price of $20.57.

Heartland Express (NASDAQ:HTLD) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, August 2nd. The transportation company reported $0.18 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.19 by ($0.01). Heartland Express had a net margin of 9.89% and a return on equity of 10.60%. The firm had revenue of $129.62 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $139.89 million. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.20 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 19.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that Heartland Express, Inc. will post $0.70 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 2nd. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 22nd will be issued a $0.02 dividend. This represents a $0.08 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.36%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 21st. Heartland Express’s payout ratio is currently 12.12%.

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Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of HTLD. Pinebridge Investments L.P. lifted its holdings in shares of Heartland Express by 1.0% in the 2nd quarter. Pinebridge Investments L.P. now owns 5,707 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $119,000 after purchasing an additional 58 shares during the last quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Heartland Express by 52.7% in the 1st quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 8,505 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $171,000 after purchasing an additional 2,935 shares during the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue lifted its holdings in shares of Heartland Express by 78.8% in the 2nd quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 8,546 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $177,000 after purchasing an additional 3,766 shares during the last quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan lifted its holdings in shares of Heartland Express by 1.6% in the 1st quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan now owns 9,890 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $198,000 after purchasing an additional 160 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Mason Street Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Heartland Express by 7.0% in the 1st quarter. Mason Street Advisors LLC now owns 10,128 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $203,000 after purchasing an additional 664 shares during the last quarter. 60.91% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Several research analysts recently issued reports on HTLD shares. TheStreet lowered Heartland Express from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research report on Friday, May 26th. BidaskClub raised Heartland Express from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 14th. Zacks Investment Research raised Heartland Express from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $23.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Monday, June 26th. UBS AG raised Heartland Express from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and upped their target price for the company from $20.00 to $22.00 in a research report on Monday, July 10th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $23.00 target price (up from $19.00) on shares of Heartland Express in a research report on Monday, July 10th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and six have assigned a hold rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $21.75.

About Heartland Express

Heartland Express, Inc is a holding company. The Company is a short-to-medium haul truckload carrier. The Company focuses primarily on short- to medium-haul, asset-based dry van truckload services in regional markets near its terminals. The Company’s truckload services are primarily asset-based transportation services in the dry van truckload market, and it also offers truckload temperature-controlled transportation services and non-asset based brokerage services.

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