Delta Air Lines (DAL) Stock Rating Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report report published on Monday, Zacks.com reports. They currently have $63.00 price target on the transportation company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Delta have outperformed its industry in a year's time. Solid demand for air travel has led to an uptick in passenger revenues, which account for bulk of the company's top line. As an evidence, Delta’s passenger count rose 6.6% in April 2019. With traffic growth outpacing capacity expansion, load factor increased in April. We expect the metric to increase in the coming months too driven by impressive traffic. Delta expects current-year top line to increase in the 5-7% range mainly owing to upbeat passenger revenues. Additionally, the company's efforts to reward its shareholders through dividends and buybacks are impressive. Delta has returned in excess of $12 billion to its shareholders over the past five years. As in the previous years, we expect Delta to increase its quarterly dividend in 2019 too. However, technological glitches have lately been hampering Delta's operations and profitability.”

Other analysts also recently issued reports about the stock. Buckingham Research lifted their price target on shares of Delta Air Lines from $62.00 to $71.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Wednesday, April 3rd. Stifel Nicolaus lifted their price target on shares of Delta Air Lines from $80.00 to $85.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Wednesday, April 3rd. Citigroup lifted their price target on shares of Delta Air Lines from $68.00 to $70.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Thursday, April 11th. Credit Suisse Group set a $67.00 price target on shares of Delta Air Lines and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Wednesday, January 16th. Finally, Stephens set a $63.00 price target on shares of Delta Air Lines and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, April 2nd. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $66.09.

DAL opened at $55.38 on Monday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.05, a quick ratio of 0.29 and a current ratio of 0.34. Delta Air Lines has a fifty-two week low of $45.08 and a fifty-two week high of $61.32. The firm has a market cap of $36.24 billion, a P/E ratio of 9.80, a PEG ratio of 0.66 and a beta of 1.13.

Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 10th. The transportation company reported $0.96 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.90 by $0.06. The company had revenue of $10.47 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $10.39 billion. Delta Air Lines had a net margin of 9.09% and a return on equity of 30.10%. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.74 EPS. As a group, equities analysts expect that Delta Air Lines will post 6.65 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, May 23rd. Stockholders of record on Thursday, May 2nd will be issued a $0.35 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, May 1st. This represents a $1.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.53%. Delta Air Lines’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 24.78%.

In other Delta Air Lines news, major shareholder Berkshire Hathaway Inc bought 2,345,077 shares of Delta Air Lines stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 8th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $49.37 per share, for a total transaction of $115,776,451.49. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Peter W. Carter sold 25,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, April 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $58.01, for a total transaction of $1,450,250.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 85,295 shares in the company, valued at $4,947,962.95. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders bought 3,554,538 shares of company stock worth $175,828,075 and sold 145,901 shares worth $8,125,848. Insiders own 0.47% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of DAL. Boston Partners grew its holdings in Delta Air Lines by 24.1% during the 1st quarter. Boston Partners now owns 13,730,881 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $709,200,000 after purchasing an additional 2,669,765 shares during the last quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund grew its holdings in Delta Air Lines by 3,837.2% during the 4th quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 10,713,031 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $215,000 after purchasing an additional 10,440,934 shares during the last quarter. FMR LLC grew its holdings in Delta Air Lines by 30.9% during the 4th quarter. FMR LLC now owns 9,742,670 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $486,161,000 after purchasing an additional 2,298,101 shares during the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC grew its holdings in Delta Air Lines by 3.2% during the 1st quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 8,007,466 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $412,981,000 after purchasing an additional 250,339 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its holdings in Delta Air Lines by 0.6% during the 4th quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 7,801,924 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $389,356,000 after purchasing an additional 50,255 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 91.60% of the company’s stock.

About Delta Air Lines

Delta Air Lines, Inc provides scheduled air transportation for passengers and cargo in the United States and internationally. The company operates through two segments, Airline and Refinery. Its route network is centered on a system of hubs and markets at airports in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, London-Heathrow, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Minneapolis-St.

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