Southwest Airlines Co (NYSE:LUV) Short Interest Update

Southwest Airlines Co (NYSE:LUV) was the recipient of a significant increase in short interest in July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 6,860,200 shares, an increase of 11.4% from the June 30th total of 6,155,700 shares. Currently, 1.3% of the shares of the company are short sold. Based on an average daily volume of 3,570,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 1.9 days.

LUV traded down $1.16 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $48.76. The company had a trading volume of 3,653,800 shares, compared to its average volume of 4,363,837. 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 company’s 50-day moving average price is $51.70. The firm has a market capitalization of $27.12 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.50, a P/E/G ratio of 1.09 and a beta of 1.50. Southwest Airlines has a 1 year low of $44.28 and a 1 year high of $64.02.

Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 25th. The airline reported $1.37 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.35 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $5.91 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.94 billion. Southwest Airlines had a return on equity of 24.12% and a net margin of 10.73%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 2.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $1.26 earnings per share. Research analysts forecast that Southwest Airlines will post 4.35 EPS for the current fiscal year.



The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, September 11th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, August 21st will be given a $0.18 dividend. This represents a $0.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.48%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, August 20th. Southwest Airlines’s payout ratio is 16.98%.

LUV has been the subject of a number of research reports. Argus cut Southwest Airlines from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday. 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 research report on Friday, July 26th. Morgan Stanley reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $59.00 price objective (down previously from $64.00) on shares of Southwest Airlines in a research report on Wednesday. Barclays reduced their price objective on Southwest Airlines from $65.00 to $60.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, April 26th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut Southwest Airlines from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Thursday, May 16th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $57.16.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. AQR Capital Management LLC grew its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 50.7% during the second quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 5,547,705 shares of the airline’s stock worth $281,712,000 after purchasing an additional 1,865,500 shares in the last quarter. AJO LP grew its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 9,537.6% during the first quarter. AJO LP now owns 1,518,979 shares of the airline’s stock worth $78,850,000 after purchasing an additional 1,503,218 shares in the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 37.7% during the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 4,920,617 shares of the airline’s stock worth $228,736,000 after purchasing an additional 1,348,168 shares in the last quarter. Boston Partners grew its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 13.9% during the first quarter. Boston Partners now owns 9,998,417 shares of the airline’s stock worth $519,018,000 after purchasing an additional 1,219,028 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State of Tennessee Treasury Department grew its position in shares of Southwest Airlines by 629.5% during the first quarter. State of Tennessee Treasury Department now owns 1,290,943 shares of the airline’s stock worth $67,013,000 after purchasing an additional 1,113,980 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 84.25% of the company’s stock.

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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