Northrop Grumman Co. (NYSE:NOC) has earned a consensus recommendation of “Buy” from the twenty research firms that are currently covering the company, MarketBeat Ratings reports. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating on the company. The average twelve-month price objective among analysts that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $332.47.
Several research firms have weighed in on NOC. ValuEngine lowered Northrop Grumman from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, January 4th. Cowen reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $300.00 target price on shares of Northrop Grumman in a report on Thursday, January 31st. Argus reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Northrop Grumman in a report on Friday, February 1st. Zacks Investment Research lowered Northrop Grumman from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 13th. Finally, Drexel Hamilton reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $335.00 target price on shares of Northrop Grumman in a report on Wednesday, December 19th.
In other news, CAO Michael A. Hardesty sold 259 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, February 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $288.38, for a total value of $74,690.42. Following the sale, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 6,253 shares in the company, valued at $1,803,240.14. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, VP David T. Perry sold 13,210 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, February 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $288.94, for a total value of $3,816,897.40. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 25,100 shares in the company, valued at $7,252,394. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 119,289 shares of company stock worth $34,274,861 over the last 90 days. Company insiders own 0.62% of the company’s stock.
Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of NOC. Paradigm Asset Management Co. LLC lifted its position in Northrop Grumman by 15.0% during the third quarter. Paradigm Asset Management Co. LLC now owns 8,050 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $2,555,000 after buying an additional 1,050 shares during the period. Highwater Wealth Management LLC purchased a new position in Northrop Grumman during the fourth quarter worth about $168,000. Raymond James Trust N.A. lifted its position in Northrop Grumman by 52.6% during the fourth quarter. Raymond James Trust N.A. now owns 6,363 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $1,558,000 after buying an additional 2,194 shares during the period. Beacon Pointe Advisors LLC purchased a new position in Northrop Grumman during the fourth quarter worth about $789,000. Finally, Richard Bernstein Advisors LLC lifted its position in Northrop Grumman by 97.0% during the third quarter. Richard Bernstein Advisors LLC now owns 25,591 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $8,122,000 after buying an additional 12,603 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 84.00% of the company’s stock.
NOC stock traded down $1.46 on Wednesday, reaching $269.55. 12,501 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 892,888. Northrop Grumman has a twelve month low of $223.63 and a twelve month high of $360.88. The firm has a market capitalization of $46.00 billion, a PE ratio of 12.65, a P/E/G ratio of 1.13 and a beta of 0.89. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.70, a current ratio of 1.17 and a quick ratio of 1.09.
Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, January 31st. The aerospace company reported $4.93 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $4.45 by $0.48. The firm had revenue of $8.16 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $8.11 billion. Northrop Grumman had a return on equity of 41.24% and a net margin of 9.73%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $2.82 earnings per share. Equities research analysts expect that Northrop Grumman will post 18.94 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Northrop Grumman announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback plan on Tuesday, December 4th that authorizes the company to repurchase $3.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the aerospace company to repurchase up to 6.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, March 13th. Stockholders of record on Monday, February 25th were given a $1.20 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Friday, February 22nd. This represents a $4.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.78%. Northrop Grumman’s dividend payout ratio is currently 22.50%.
About Northrop Grumman
Northrop Grumman Corporation, a security company, provides products in the areas of autonomous systems, cyber, space, strikes, and logistics and modernizations in the United States, the Asia Pacific, and internationally. The company operates through four segments: Aerospace Systems, Innovation Systems, Mission Systems, and Technology Services.
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