Brokerages Expect Norfolk Southern Co. (NYSE:NSC) Will Post Quarterly Sales of $3.09 Billion

Equities analysts expect Norfolk Southern Co. (NYSE:NSCGet Rating) to report sales of $3.09 billion for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Five analysts have made estimates for Norfolk Southern’s earnings, with the highest sales estimate coming in at $3.17 billion and the lowest estimate coming in at $3.04 billion. Norfolk Southern reported sales of $2.80 billion during the same quarter last year, which would suggest a positive year-over-year growth rate of 10.4%. The firm is expected to issue its next earnings report on Monday, January 1st.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Norfolk Southern will report full year sales of $12.28 billion for the current fiscal year, with estimates ranging from $12.19 billion to $12.34 billion. For the next year, analysts expect that the firm will post sales of $12.61 billion, with estimates ranging from $12.25 billion to $12.90 billion. Zacks’ sales calculations are a mean average based on a survey of analysts that that provide coverage for Norfolk Southern.

Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSCGet Rating) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 27th. The railroad operator reported $2.93 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.91 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $2.92 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.83 billion. Norfolk Southern had a return on equity of 21.95% and a net margin of 26.58%. The business’s revenue was up 10.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm posted $2.66 EPS.

NSC has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. Susquehanna decreased their price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern from $356.00 to $350.00 and set a “positive” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, April 7th. Susquehanna Bancshares decreased their price target on shares of Norfolk Southern from $356.00 to $350.00 in a research note on Thursday, April 7th. Royal Bank of Canada boosted their price objective on shares of Norfolk Southern from $262.00 to $273.00 in a research report on Thursday, January 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Norfolk Southern from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $299.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, March 29th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. dropped their target price on Norfolk Southern from $318.00 to $308.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, April 8th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat, the company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $309.41.

In other Norfolk Southern news, President Alan H. Shaw sold 1,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, March 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $256.70, for a total value of $256,700.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Steven F. Leer sold 700 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, March 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $265.51, for a total value of $185,857.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.31% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Cornerstone Wealth Management LLC increased its holdings in Norfolk Southern by 1.4% during the third quarter. Cornerstone Wealth Management LLC now owns 2,628 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $629,000 after buying an additional 37 shares during the last quarter. Equitable Trust Co. increased its stake in shares of Norfolk Southern by 1.7% in the 4th quarter. Equitable Trust Co. now owns 2,261 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $674,000 after purchasing an additional 38 shares in the last quarter. First Bank & Trust raised its holdings in Norfolk Southern by 2.9% in the 4th quarter. First Bank & Trust now owns 1,369 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $407,000 after purchasing an additional 38 shares during the period. Foster & Motley Inc. lifted its position in Norfolk Southern by 2.9% during the fourth quarter. Foster & Motley Inc. now owns 1,377 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $410,000 after purchasing an additional 39 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Centric Wealth Management grew its holdings in Norfolk Southern by 1.3% during the first quarter. Centric Wealth Management now owns 3,025 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $863,000 after purchasing an additional 39 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 73.63% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE:NSC traded up $3.26 during midday trading on Monday, reaching $249.32. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,116,431 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,423,140. The business’s fifty day simple moving average is $265.24 and its 200-day simple moving average is $274.44. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.02, a current ratio of 0.96 and a quick ratio of 0.87. Norfolk Southern has a fifty-two week low of $238.62 and a fifty-two week high of $299.20. The company has a market capitalization of $59.42 billion, a P/E ratio of 20.12, a P/E/G ratio of 1.70 and a beta of 1.36.

Norfolk Southern announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase plan on Tuesday, March 29th that permits the company to repurchase $10.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the railroad operator to purchase up to 14.6% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 20th. Stockholders of record on Friday, May 6th will be given a dividend of $1.24 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, May 5th. This represents a $4.96 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.99%. Norfolk Southern’s payout ratio is currently 40.03%.

About Norfolk Southern (Get Rating)

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 agriculture, forest, and consumer products comprising soybeans, wheat, corn, fertilizers, livestock and poultry feed, food products, food oils, flour, sweeteners, ethanol, lumber and wood products, pulp board and paper products, wood fibers, wood pulp, scrap paper, beverages, canned goods, and consumer products; chemicals consist of sulfur and related chemicals, petroleum products, chlorine and bleaching compounds, plastics, rubber, industrial chemicals, chemical wastes, and sand; metals and construction materials, such as steel, aluminum products, machinery, scrap metals, cement, aggregates, minerals, clay, transportation equipment, and military-related products; and automotive, including finished motor vehicles and automotive parts, as well as coal.

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