Shares of Norfolk Southern Corp. (NYSE:NSC) have been assigned a consensus recommendation of “Hold” from the twenty-two ratings firms that are presently covering the company, Marketbeat.com reports. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the company. The average 1-year price target among brokerages that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $183.28.

NSC has been the subject of several research reports. Morgan Stanley set a $113.00 price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern and gave the company a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, October 22nd. Loop Capital raised shares of Norfolk Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price target for the stock from $179.00 to $190.00 in a research report on Wednesday, October 24th. Stifel Nicolaus raised shares of Norfolk Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $189.00 price target for the company in a research report on Wednesday, October 24th. TD Securities raised shares of Norfolk Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 25th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Robert W. Baird reduced their price target on shares of Norfolk Southern from $186.00 to $181.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, October 25th.

In other Norfolk Southern news, VP Jason Andrew Zampi sold 519 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, February 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $181.34, for a total transaction of $94,115.46. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, COO Michael Joseph Wheeler sold 4,761 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $180.23, for a total value of $858,075.03. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 19,724 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,554,856.52. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.23% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in NSC. Bruderman Asset Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Norfolk Southern during the fourth quarter valued at $26,000. Intercontinental Wealth Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of Norfolk Southern during the fourth quarter valued at $27,000. Moody National Bank Trust Division bought a new position in shares of Norfolk Southern during the fourth quarter valued at $31,000. Arlington Partners LLC bought a new position in shares of Norfolk Southern in the fourth quarter valued at about $37,000. Finally, PRW Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Norfolk Southern in the fourth quarter valued at about $36,000. Institutional investors own 81.25% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE:NSC traded up $0.34 during trading hours on Tuesday, hitting $183.21. 608,283 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 2,110,368. Norfolk Southern has a 52 week low of $127.79 and a 52 week high of $186.91. The company has a current ratio of 0.72, a quick ratio of 0.64 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.69. The firm has a market cap of $48.63 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.26, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.55 and a beta of 1.38.

Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, January 24th. The railroad operator reported $2.57 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.30 by $0.27. Norfolk Southern had a net margin of 23.27% and a return on equity of 16.71%. The company had revenue of $2.90 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.85 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.69 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, research analysts forecast that Norfolk Southern will post 10.37 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, March 11th. Investors of record on Monday, February 4th will be issued a $0.86 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, February 1st. This represents a $3.44 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.88%. This is an increase from Norfolk Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.80. Norfolk Southern’s dividend payout ratio is currently 36.17%.

Norfolk Southern Company Profile

Norfolk Southern Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the rail transportation of raw materials, intermediate products, and finished goods. It also transports overseas freight through various Atlantic and Gulf Coast ports, as well as coal, automotive, and industrial products; and provides commuter passenger services.

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Analyst Recommendations for Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC)

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