Norfolk Souther Corporation (NSC) Rating Lowered to Market Perform at Wells Fargo & Company

Wells Fargo & Company lowered shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation (NYSE:NSC) from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a research note issued to investors on Monday morning, Marketbeat Ratings reports.

Other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports about the stock. Wolfe Research upgraded shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation from a market perform rating to a buy rating and set a $126.00 price target for the company in a report on Monday, August 7th. Cowen and Company restated a buy rating and set a $130.00 price target on shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation in a report on Tuesday, July 11th. UBS AG reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $133.00 price objective on shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation in a research report on Monday, August 14th. ValuEngine raised shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Friday, September 1st. Finally, Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $143.00 price objective (up previously from $133.00) on shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation in a research report on Thursday, October 12th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seventeen have given a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $118.38.

Shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation (NSC) opened at 130.24 on Monday. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $128.79 and its 200-day moving average price is $120.68. Norfolk Souther Corporation has a 12 month low of $89.95 and a 12 month high of $134.52. The stock has a market capitalization of $37.53 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.16 and a beta of 1.38.

Norfolk Souther Corporation (NYSE:NSC) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 26th. The railroad operator reported $1.71 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.65 by $0.06. Norfolk Souther Corporation had a net margin of 17.66% and a return on equity of 14.45%. The company had revenue of $2.64 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.64 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $1.36 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 7.5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts forecast that Norfolk Souther Corporation will post $6.36 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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Norfolk Souther Corporation announced that its board has authorized a stock buyback program on Tuesday, September 26th that permits the company to buyback 50,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization permits the railroad operator to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are typically an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

In other news, Chairman James A. Squires sold 24,407 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $119.95, for a total transaction of $2,927,619.65. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now owns 76,481 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $9,173,895.95. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, VP Thomas E. Hurlbut sold 300 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $118.80, for a total transaction of $35,640.00. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 4,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $475,200. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 27,077 shares of company stock valued at $3,244,531. Company insiders own 0.36% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of NSC. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation by 3,039.1% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 19,551,432 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $2,189,172,000 after buying an additional 18,928,598 shares in the last quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. increased its holdings in shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation by 936.1% during the first quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 5,378,457 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $602,226,000 after buying an additional 4,859,355 shares in the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased its holdings in shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation by 31.8% during the first quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 4,209,269 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $471,313,000 after buying an additional 1,016,319 shares in the last quarter. Lazard Asset Management LLC increased its holdings in shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation by 17.1% during the second quarter. Lazard Asset Management LLC now owns 6,343,533 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $772,007,000 after buying an additional 925,496 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Investec Asset Management LTD acquired a new stake in shares of Norfolk Souther Corporation during the first quarter worth approximately $92,710,000. 70.45% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Norfolk Souther Corporation

Norfolk Southern Corporation is a holding company engaged in the rail transportation business. As of December 31, 2016, the Company operated approximately 19,500 miles of road primarily in the East and Midwest. The Company is engaged in the rail transportation of raw materials, intermediate products and finished goods primarily in the Southeast, East and Midwest.

Analyst Recommendations for Norfolk Souther Corporation (NYSE:NSC)

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