Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan Trust Fund increased its holdings in Norfolk Southern Co. (NYSE:NSC) by 59.9% during the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 35,500 shares of the railroad operator’s stock after acquiring an additional 13,300 shares during the quarter. Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan Trust Fund’s holdings in Norfolk Southern were worth $8,435,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
Several other large investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. United Bank raised its position in shares of Norfolk Southern by 1.5% in the 3rd quarter. United Bank now owns 8,314 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $1,779,000 after purchasing an additional 123 shares in the last quarter. Wealth Alliance acquired a new stake in Norfolk Southern in the third quarter valued at $252,000. Advisors Asset Management Inc. boosted its stake in Norfolk Southern by 15.0% during the 3rd quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. now owns 4,894 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $1,047,000 after acquiring an additional 640 shares during the last quarter. Engineers Gate Manager LP grew its holdings in Norfolk Southern by 216.7% during the 3rd quarter. Engineers Gate Manager LP now owns 9,827 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $2,103,000 after acquiring an additional 6,724 shares in the last quarter. Finally, ExodusPoint Capital Management LP increased its position in shares of Norfolk Southern by 313.5% in the 3rd quarter. ExodusPoint Capital Management LP now owns 19,536 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $4,181,000 after purchasing an additional 14,811 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 67.25% of the company’s stock.
Several analysts recently weighed in on NSC shares. Credit Suisse Group lowered their price objective on Norfolk Southern from $283.00 to $271.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a report on Thursday, January 28th. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft upped their price target on Norfolk Southern from $232.00 to $261.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, March 29th. Royal Bank of Canada lifted their price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern from $220.00 to $234.00 and gave the stock an “underperform” rating in a report on Thursday, January 28th. Morgan Stanley lifted their price target on shares of Norfolk Southern from $145.00 to $165.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a report on Tuesday. Finally, Vertical Research started coverage on shares of Norfolk Southern in a research note on Friday, March 26th. They set a “hold” rating and a $240.00 price objective on the stock. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating, twelve have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $238.57.
Shares of NSC opened at $271.48 on Thursday. Norfolk Southern Co. has a one year low of $147.37 and a one year high of $276.15. The stock’s fifty day moving average is $261.21 and its 200-day moving average is $240.01. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.85, a quick ratio of 1.16 and a current ratio of 1.29. The firm has a market capitalization of $73.91 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 34.94, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.09 and a beta of 1.38.
Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, January 26th. The railroad operator reported $2.64 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.48 by $0.16. Norfolk Southern had a net margin of 20.27% and a return on equity of 15.83%. The firm had revenue of $2.60 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.54 billion. Norfolk Southern’s quarterly revenue was down 3.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $2.55 EPS. Analysts forecast that Norfolk Southern Co. will post 9.1 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, March 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, February 5th were paid a dividend of $0.99 per share. This is a positive change from Norfolk Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.94. This represents a $3.96 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.46%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, February 4th. Norfolk Southern’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 38.30%.
In related news, EVP Ann A. Adams sold 1,417 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, February 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $239.00, for a total transaction of $338,663.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 8,710 shares in the company, valued at $2,081,690. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, EVP Ann A. Adams sold 227 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, January 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $239.10, for a total transaction of $54,275.70. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 7,782 shares in the company, valued at $1,860,676.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 4,147 shares of company stock valued at $1,030,541. Insiders own 0.32% of the company’s stock.
Norfolk Southern Profile
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 industrial products, including agriculture, forest and consumer products, chemicals, and metals and construction materials; and coal, automobiles, and automotive parts.
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