Morgan Stanley Raises Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) Price Target to $63.00

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) had its price target lifted by investment analysts at Morgan Stanley from $60.00 to $63.00 in a research note issued to investors on Thursday, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. The firm currently has an “overweight” rating on the airline’s stock. Morgan Stanley’s price target suggests a potential upside of 17.96% from the stock’s previous close.

Several other analysts have also commented on the company. Bank of America upgraded Southwest Airlines to a “buy” rating and set a $65.00 price objective for the company in a report on Monday, September 23rd. Wolfe Research upgraded Southwest Airlines from a “peer perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $57.00 price objective for the company in a report on Friday, August 16th. Cowen reiterated a “market perform” rating and set a $57.00 price objective (up previously from $55.00) on shares of Southwest Airlines in a report on Friday, July 26th. Berenberg Bank assumed coverage on Southwest Airlines in a report on Friday, September 6th. They set a “hold” rating and a $57.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Macquarie raised Southwest Airlines from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $67.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Friday, September 13th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $57.95.

Shares of LUV traded down $0.08 during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $53.41. 785,388 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 3,953,284. Southwest Airlines has a 1 year low of $44.28 and a 1 year high of $60.86. The firm’s fifty day moving average is $53.13 and its 200-day moving average is $52.00. The company has a current ratio of 0.64, a quick ratio of 0.59 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.37. The stock has a market capitalization of $28.75 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.60, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.24 and a beta of 1.48.

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 25th. The airline reported $1.37 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.35 by $0.02. Southwest Airlines had a return on equity of 24.12% and a net margin of 10.73%. The firm had revenue of $5.91 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.94 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $1.26 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.9% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Southwest Airlines will post 4.27 EPS for the current year.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in LUV. Executive Wealth Management LLC grew its position in Southwest Airlines by 19.8% during the 2nd quarter. Executive Wealth Management LLC now owns 1,233 shares of the airline’s stock worth $63,000 after purchasing an additional 204 shares during the period. Sfmg LLC grew its position in Southwest Airlines by 2.3% during the 2nd quarter. Sfmg LLC now owns 9,098 shares of the airline’s stock worth $484,000 after purchasing an additional 207 shares during the period. FDx Advisors Inc. grew its position in Southwest Airlines by 4.6% during the 2nd quarter. FDx Advisors Inc. now owns 4,905 shares of the airline’s stock worth $249,000 after purchasing an additional 216 shares during the period. Wetherby Asset Management Inc. grew its position in Southwest Airlines by 2.5% during the 2nd quarter. Wetherby Asset Management Inc. now owns 10,248 shares of the airline’s stock worth $520,000 after purchasing an additional 250 shares during the period. Finally, OLD Second National Bank of Aurora grew its position in Southwest Airlines by 0.7% during the 2nd quarter. OLD Second National Bank of Aurora now owns 36,701 shares of the airline’s stock worth $1,864,000 after purchasing an additional 260 shares during the period. 82.01% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Southwest Airlines

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, 2018, the company operated a total of 750 Boeing 737 aircraft; and served 99 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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