News stories about Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) have trended somewhat positive this week, Accern Sentiment Analysis reports. The research group scores the sentiment of news coverage by monitoring more than 20 million news and blog sources in real-time. Accern ranks coverage of publicly-traded companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. Norfolk Southern earned a media sentiment score of 0.16 on Accern’s scale. Accern also gave press coverage about the railroad operator an impact score of 46.5316468060287 out of 100, indicating that recent news coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the stock’s share price in the near future.
These are some of the news stories that may have impacted Accern Sentiment Analysis’s analysis:
- Norfolk Southern (NSC) Upgraded to Buy at ValuEngine (americanbankingnews.com)
- Norfolk Southern (NSC) Coverage Initiated at Goldman Sachs Group (americanbankingnews.com)
- How Norfolk Southern’s Railcar Traffic Trended in Week 50 (finance.yahoo.com)
- Comparing Ryder System (R) & Norfolk Southern (NSC) (americanbankingnews.com)
- Reviewing Norfolk Southern (NSC) & XPO Intermodal (PACR) (americanbankingnews.com)
NSC has been the subject of several recent research reports. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $124.00 price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern in a report on Tuesday, September 12th. Morgan Stanley reissued an “underweight” rating and set a $75.00 target price (down from $77.00) on shares of Norfolk Southern in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Norfolk Southern from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. Citigroup increased their target price on shares of Norfolk Southern from $124.00 to $135.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. Finally, Aegis reissued a “hold” rating and set a $125.00 target price (up from $120.00) on shares of Norfolk Southern in a research report on Tuesday, October 10th. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have issued a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. Norfolk Southern has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $127.62.
Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The railroad operator reported $1.75 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.64 by $0.11. Norfolk Southern had a net margin of 17.86% and a return on equity of 14.72%. The business had revenue of $2.67 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.65 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.55 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 5.8% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts predict that Norfolk Southern will post 6.47 earnings per share for the current year.
Norfolk Southern declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase program on Tuesday, September 26th that allows the company to buyback 50,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization allows the railroad operator to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, December 11th. Investors of record on Friday, November 3rd were paid a $0.61 dividend. This represents a $2.44 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.68%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, November 2nd. Norfolk Southern’s payout ratio is presently 38.36%.
In other news, COO Michael Joseph Wheeler sold 3,568 shares of Norfolk Southern stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, October 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $133.00, for a total value of $474,544.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 15,837 shares in the company, valued at $2,106,321. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, VP Thomas E. Hurlbut sold 2,370 shares of Norfolk Southern stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $134.71, for a total transaction of $319,262.70. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 6,370 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $858,102.70. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 12,113 shares of company stock valued at $1,594,148. Corporate insiders own 0.36% of the company’s stock.
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About Norfolk Southern
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.
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