Hartford Investment Management Co. lowered its stake in Norfolk Southern Co. (NYSE:NSC – Get Rating) by 7.7% in the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 24,179 shares of the railroad operator’s stock after selling 2,031 shares during the period. Hartford Investment Management Co.’s holdings in Norfolk Southern were worth $6,896,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of the company. Equitable Trust Co. increased its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern by 1.7% during the 4th quarter. Equitable Trust Co. now owns 2,261 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $674,000 after purchasing an additional 38 shares during the last quarter. First Bank & Trust grew its stake in Norfolk Southern by 2.9% in the 4th quarter. First Bank & Trust now owns 1,369 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $407,000 after buying an additional 38 shares during the last quarter. Foster & Motley Inc. grew its stake in Norfolk Southern by 2.9% in the 4th quarter. Foster & Motley Inc. now owns 1,377 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $410,000 after buying an additional 39 shares during the last quarter. Centric Wealth Management grew its stake in Norfolk Southern by 1.3% in the 1st quarter. Centric Wealth Management now owns 3,025 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $863,000 after buying an additional 39 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Wetherby Asset Management Inc. grew its stake in Norfolk Southern by 0.6% in the 4th quarter. Wetherby Asset Management Inc. now owns 6,382 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $1,900,000 after buying an additional 40 shares during the last quarter. 73.63% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
A number of brokerages recently commented on NSC. JPMorgan Chase & Co. decreased their price target on shares of Norfolk Southern from $318.00 to $308.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, April 8th. Susquehanna decreased their target price on shares of Norfolk Southern from $356.00 to $350.00 and set a “positive” rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, April 7th. StockNews.com initiated coverage on shares of Norfolk Southern in a research report on Thursday, March 31st. They set a “hold” rating on the stock. Credit Suisse Group initiated coverage on shares of Norfolk Southern in a research report on Monday. They set an “outperform” rating and a $267.00 target price on the stock. Finally, Susquehanna Bancshares decreased their target price on shares of Norfolk Southern from $356.00 to $350.00 in a research report on Thursday, April 7th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, Norfolk Southern currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $299.89.
In related news, CEO Alan H. Shaw sold 1,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, June 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $241.84, for a total value of $241,840.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 34,255 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $8,284,229.20. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. 0.31% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Shares of NYSE:NSC opened at $227.29 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $54.17 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.34, a PEG ratio of 1.58 and a beta of 1.37. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.02, a current ratio of 0.96 and a quick ratio of 0.87. The firm has a 50 day simple moving average of $240.36 and a 200 day simple moving average of $263.31. Norfolk Southern Co. has a one year low of $219.31 and a one year high of $299.20.
Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC – Get Rating) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, April 27th. The railroad operator reported $2.93 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $2.91 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $2.92 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.83 billion. Norfolk Southern had a net margin of 26.58% and a return on equity of 21.95%. The firm’s revenue was up 10.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $2.66 EPS. As a group, analysts expect that Norfolk Southern Co. will post 13.9 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 20th. Investors of record on Friday, May 6th were paid a $1.24 dividend. This represents a $4.96 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.18%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, May 5th. Norfolk Southern’s payout ratio is 40.03%.
Norfolk Southern declared that its board has initiated a stock buyback plan on Tuesday, March 29th that allows the company to buyback $10.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the railroad operator to reacquire up to 14.6% of its shares through open market purchases. Share buyback plans are typically a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.
Norfolk Southern Profile: (Get Rating)
Norfolk Southern Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the rail transportation of raw materials, intermediate products, and finished goods in the United States. The company transports agriculture, forest, and consumer products comprising soybeans, wheat, corn, fertilizers, livestock and poultry feed, food products, food oils, flour, sweeteners, ethanol, lumber and wood products, pulp board and paper products, wood fibers, wood pulp, scrap paper, beverages, canned goods, and consumer products; chemicals consist of sulfur and related chemicals, petroleum products, chlorine and bleaching compounds, plastics, rubber, industrial chemicals, chemical wastes, and sand; metals and construction materials, such as steel, aluminum products, machinery, scrap metals, cement, aggregates, minerals, clay, transportation equipment, and military-related products; and automotive, including finished motor vehicles and automotive parts, as well as coal.
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