Equities research analysts forecast that Northrop Grumman Co. (NYSE:NOC) will report $4.60 earnings per share for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks reports. Four analysts have provided estimates for Northrop Grumman’s earnings. The highest EPS estimate is $4.67 and the lowest is $4.47. Northrop Grumman posted earnings of $4.21 per share during the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year-over-year growth rate of 9.3%. The firm is scheduled to report its next quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th.

On average, analysts expect that Northrop Grumman will report full-year earnings of $18.94 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $18.59 to $19.15. For the next year, analysts forecast that the firm will report earnings of $21.95 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $21.50 to $22.25. Zacks’ earnings per share calculations are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side research analysts that cover Northrop Grumman.

Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) last released its earnings results on Thursday, January 31st. The aerospace company reported $4.93 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $4.45 by $0.48. Northrop Grumman had a net margin of 9.73% and a return on equity of 41.24%. The company had revenue of $8.16 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $8.11 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $2.82 EPS.

A number of brokerages have recently weighed in on NOC. Citigroup reduced their price target on shares of Northrop Grumman from $350.00 to $333.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research note on Monday, January 14th. Credit Suisse Group restated a “buy” rating on shares of Northrop Grumman in a report on Thursday, January 31st. Barclays cut their price target on shares of Northrop Grumman from $400.00 to $310.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, December 4th. Goldman Sachs Group downgraded shares of Northrop Grumman from a “conviction-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, February 1st. Finally, Susquehanna Bancshares began coverage on shares of Northrop Grumman in a report on Thursday, January 10th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $273.00 price objective for the company. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $336.39.

In related news, VP Mark A. Caylor sold 9,501 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, March 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $285.45, for a total value of $2,712,060.45. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 25,280 shares in the company, valued at $7,216,176. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, VP Janis G. Pamiljans sold 2,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $285.12, for a total value of $712,800.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 6,732 shares in the company, valued at $1,919,427.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 119,289 shares of company stock valued at $34,274,861. Insiders own 0.62% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Diversified Trust Co boosted its stake in Northrop Grumman by 3.9% in the 4th quarter. Diversified Trust Co now owns 1,034 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $253,000 after purchasing an additional 39 shares during the period. Penserra Capital Management LLC increased its stake in Northrop Grumman by 31.3% in the 4th quarter. Penserra Capital Management LLC now owns 168 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $41,000 after purchasing an additional 40 shares during the period. Cornell Pochily Investment Advisors Inc. increased its stake in shares of Northrop Grumman by 3.6% during the fourth quarter. Cornell Pochily Investment Advisors Inc. now owns 1,310 shares of the aerospace company’s stock valued at $321,000 after buying an additional 45 shares during the period. Cerity Partners LLC increased its stake in shares of Northrop Grumman by 1.7% during the fourth quarter. Cerity Partners LLC now owns 2,727 shares of the aerospace company’s stock valued at $668,000 after buying an additional 45 shares during the period. Finally, Lincoln National Corp increased its stake in shares of Northrop Grumman by 1.0% during the fourth quarter. Lincoln National Corp now owns 4,592 shares of the aerospace company’s stock valued at $1,124,000 after buying an additional 46 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 84.04% of the company’s stock.

Northrop Grumman stock opened at $267.00 on Tuesday. The company has a quick ratio of 1.09, a current ratio of 1.17 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.70. The stock has a market cap of $45.12 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.52, a PEG ratio of 1.09 and a beta of 0.89. Northrop Grumman has a 52-week low of $223.63 and a 52-week high of $360.88.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, March 13th. Investors of record on Monday, February 25th were given a dividend of $1.20 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, February 22nd. This represents a $4.80 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.80%. Northrop Grumman’s dividend payout ratio is 22.50%.

Northrop Grumman announced that its board has authorized a stock buyback program on Tuesday, December 4th that permits the company to buyback $3.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the aerospace company to buy up to 6.9% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

Northrop Grumman Company Profile

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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Earnings History and Estimates for Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC)

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