A number of research firms have changed their ratings and price targets for Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV):

  • 11/19/2018 – Southwest Airlines is now covered by analysts at Credit Suisse Group AG. They set a “neutral” rating and a $54.00 price target on the stock.
  • 11/14/2018 – Southwest Airlines had its price target lowered by analysts at Morgan Stanley from $68.00 to $64.00. They now have an “overweight” rating on the stock.
  • 11/12/2018 – Southwest Airlines is now covered by analysts at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. They set a “neutral” rating and a $61.00 price target on the stock.
  • 10/30/2018 – Southwest Airlines was downgraded by analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. from a “neutral” rating to an “underweight” rating. They now have a $52.00 price target on the stock, down previously from $63.00.
  • 10/26/2018 – Southwest Airlines had its price target lowered by analysts at Raymond James from $68.00 to $60.00. They now have an “outperform” rating on the stock.
  • 10/26/2018 – Southwest Airlines had its price target lowered by analysts at Imperial Capital from $66.00 to $56.00. They now have an “in-line” rating on the stock.
  • 10/26/2018 – Southwest Airlines had its price target lowered by analysts at Buckingham Research from $73.00 to $65.00. They now have a “buy” rating on the stock.
  • 10/11/2018 – Southwest Airlines was downgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating. According to Zacks, “Shares of Southwest Airlines have gained more than 8% over the last three months, outperforming its industry. The improved third quarter 2018 unit revenue view, unveiled by the company in September, on the back of solid demand for air travel , contributed to the uptick. Southwest Airlines expects passenger revenues to be strong in the third quarter owing to impressive bookings and close-in yield trends. Detailed results should be out on Oct 25. Also, the company's efforts to reward shareholders are commendable. We are impressed with Southwest Airlines’ initiatives to expand its operations and modernize its fleet as well. Moreover, the new tax law, which reduces corporate tax rate significantly, is a huge positive for the company. High fuel costs are, however, concerning as they are limiting bottom-line growth. This is expected to continue in the third quarter as well. Labor costs too are expected to limit bottom-line growth.”
  • 10/8/2018 – Southwest Airlines was given a new $67.00 price target on by analysts at Macquarie. They now have a “buy” rating on the stock.
  • 10/5/2018 – Southwest Airlines was given a new $68.00 price target on by analysts at Morgan Stanley. They now have a “buy” rating on the stock.
  • 10/4/2018 – Southwest Airlines was downgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating. According to Zacks, “Shares of Southwest Airlines have gained more than 18% over the last three months, outperforming its industry. The improved third quarter 2018 unit revenue view, unveiled by the company in September, on the back of solid demand for air travel , contributed to the uptick. Southwest Airlines expects passenger revenues to be strong in the third quarter owing to impressive bookings and close-in yield trends. Detailed results should be out on Oct 25. Also, the company's efforts to reward shareholders are commendable. We are impressed with Southwest Airlines’ initiatives to expand its operations and modernize its fleet as well. Moreover, the new tax law, which reduces corporate tax rate significantly, is a huge positive for the company. High fuel costs are, however, concerning as they are limiting bottom-line growth. This is expected to continue in the third quarter as well. Labor costs too are expected to limit bottom-line growth.”
  • 10/3/2018 – Southwest Airlines was downgraded by analysts at ValuEngine from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating.
  • 10/3/2018 – Southwest Airlines was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating. They now have a $69.00 price target on the stock. According to Zacks, “Shares of Southwest Airlines have gained more than 18% over the last three months, outperforming its industry. The improved third quarter 2018 unit revenue view, unveiled by the company in September, on the back of solid demand for air travel , contributed to the uptick. Southwest Airlines expects passenger revenues to be strong in the third quarter owing to impressive bookings and close-in yield trends. Detailed results should be out on Oct 25. Also, the company's efforts to reward shareholders through dividends and share buybacks are commendable. We are impressed with Southwest Airlines’ initiatives to expand its operations and modernize its fleet as well. Moreover, the new tax law, which reduces corporate tax rate significantly, is a huge positive for the company. High fuel costs are, however, concerning as they are limiting bottom-line growth.  This is expected to continue in the third quarter as well.”
  • 9/27/2018 – Southwest Airlines had its “outperform” rating reaffirmed by analysts at Imperial Capital. They now have a $66.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $60.00.

Shares of LUV stock traded down $0.77 during mid-day trading on Tuesday, reaching $51.62. 2,369,656 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 7,102,689. Southwest Airlines Co has a 12 month low of $47.10 and a 12 month high of $66.99. The stock has a market cap of $29.57 billion, a PE ratio of 14.75, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.14 and a beta of 1.22. The company has a current ratio of 0.71, a quick ratio of 0.65 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.47.

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, October 25th. The airline reported $1.08 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.06 by $0.02. Southwest Airlines had a net margin of 17.18% and a return on equity of 22.27%. The firm had revenue of $5.58 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.56 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.88 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts forecast that Southwest Airlines Co will post 4.13 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, January 2nd. Investors of record on Wednesday, December 5th will be paid a $0.16 dividend. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.24%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, December 4th. Southwest Airlines’s payout ratio is 18.29%.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC purchased a new position in Southwest Airlines in the 2nd quarter worth about $101,000. Point72 Hong Kong Ltd purchased a new stake in shares of Southwest Airlines during the 2nd quarter valued at about $108,000. CWM LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Southwest Airlines during the 2nd quarter valued at about $109,000. TRUE Private Wealth Advisors purchased a new stake in shares of Southwest Airlines during the 3rd quarter valued at about $111,000. Finally, Captrust Financial Advisors increased its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 310.5% during the 2nd quarter. Captrust Financial Advisors now owns 2,299 shares of the airline’s stock valued at $117,000 after purchasing an additional 1,739 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 78.45% of the company’s stock.

Southwest Airlines Co operates a passenger airline that provides scheduled air transportation services in the United States and near-international markets. As of December 31, 2017, the company operated a total of 706 Boeing 737 aircraft; and served 100 destinations in 40 states, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, as well as 10 near-international countries, including Mexico, Jamaica, the Bahamas, Aruba, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Belize, Cuba, the Cayman Islands, and Turks and Caicos.

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