Pillar Pacific Capital Management LLC Reduces Stake in Norfolk Southern Co. (NYSE:NSC)

Pillar Pacific Capital Management LLC trimmed its stake in Norfolk Southern Co. (NYSE:NSC) by 0.7% during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 61,437 shares of the railroad operator’s stock after selling 433 shares during the quarter. Norfolk Southern makes up 1.2% of Pillar Pacific Capital Management LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 14th biggest position. Pillar Pacific Capital Management LLC’s holdings in Norfolk Southern were worth $14,599,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Alliancebernstein L.P. increased its holdings in Norfolk Southern by 0.6% during the 4th quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 2,158,472 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $512,875,000 after acquiring an additional 13,812 shares during the period. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can increased its holdings in shares of Norfolk Southern by 841.7% in the 3rd quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 1,967,153 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $47,623,000 after buying an additional 1,758,263 shares during the last quarter. Morgan Stanley increased its holdings in shares of Norfolk Southern by 98.1% in the 3rd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 1,519,156 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $325,084,000 after buying an additional 752,193 shares during the last quarter. FIL Ltd boosted its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern by 54.8% in the 4th quarter. FIL Ltd now owns 1,182,275 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $280,920,000 after purchasing an additional 418,486 shares in the last quarter. Finally, UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern by 3.9% in the 3rd quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 1,121,715 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $240,036,000 after purchasing an additional 41,725 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 67.25% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NSC traded down $3.04 during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $257.20. The company had a trading volume of 20,716 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,135,022. Norfolk Southern Co. has a 1-year low of $112.62 and a 1-year high of $262.07. The stock has a market cap of $64.79 billion, a PE ratio of 33.49, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.09 and a beta of 1.38. The firm has a 50 day simple moving average of $248.29 and a 200-day simple moving average of $228.84. The company has a quick ratio of 1.16, a current ratio of 1.29 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.85.

Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, January 26th. The railroad operator reported $2.64 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.48 by $0.16. Norfolk Southern had a return on equity of 15.83% and a net margin of 20.27%. The firm had revenue of $2.60 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.54 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $2.55 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 3.3% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, sell-side analysts anticipate that Norfolk Southern Co. will post 9.1 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, March 10th. Investors of record on Friday, February 5th will be paid a dividend of $0.99 per share. This is a boost from Norfolk Southern’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.94. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, February 4th. This represents a $3.96 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.54%. Norfolk Southern’s payout ratio is presently 38.30%.

Several equities research analysts have weighed in on NSC shares. BMO Capital Markets increased their price target on shares of Norfolk Southern from $220.00 to $230.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 29th. Argus increased their price target on shares of Norfolk Southern from $225.00 to $275.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, February 1st. Morgan Stanley increased their price target on shares of Norfolk Southern from $135.00 to $145.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research note on Monday, February 8th. Smith Barney Citigroup raised their price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern from $250.00 to $290.00 in a research note on Monday, January 11th. Finally, Robert W. Baird upgraded shares of Norfolk Southern from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $286.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, January 12th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating, thirteen have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. Norfolk Southern currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $230.96.

In other news, EVP Ann A. Adams sold 1,417 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, February 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $239.00, for a total value of $338,663.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 8,710 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,081,690. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, EVP Ann A. Adams sold 2,460 shares of Norfolk Southern stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $255.00, for a total value of $627,300.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 9,601 shares in the company, valued at $2,448,255. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 4,147 shares of company stock valued at $1,030,541. 0.32% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Norfolk Southern Company 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 chemicals, agriculture, and metals and construction materials; and coal, automobiles, and automotive parts.

See Also: Catch-Up Contributions

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC)

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