Zacks Investment Research Upgrades Kansas City Southern (KSU) to “Buy”
Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Monday. The brokerage presently has a $122.00 price target on the transportation company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target would indicate a potential upside of 12.26% from the stock’s previous close.
According to Zacks, “Kansas City Southern's shares comfortably outperformed the industry it belongs to in the last six months. The improving scenario with respect to coal is aiding Kansas City Southern significantly. We are also bullish on the company's efforts to reward shareholders dividend payments and buybacks. In line with this objective, the company recently hiked its quarterly dividend in excess of 9%. Moreover, its board cleared a new share repurchase program worth $800 million. Sluggish intermodal revenues and high fuel costs, however, remain concerns. Moreover, high fuel costs might limit bottom line growth going forward.”
KSU has been the subject of a number of other reports. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $118.00 target price on shares of Kansas City Southern in a report on Thursday, September 21st. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Kansas City Southern from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a report on Friday, August 18th. Bank of America Corporation raised their price target on shares of Kansas City Southern from $112.00 to $113.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Monday, August 21st. UBS AG reaffirmed a “positive” rating and issued a $117.00 price objective (up previously from $103.00) on shares of Kansas City Southern in a research report on Monday, July 24th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “market perform” rating and issued a $105.00 price objective (up previously from $98.00) on shares of Kansas City Southern in a research report on Tuesday, July 25th. Ten investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, nine have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Kansas City Southern presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $106.00.
Kansas City Southern (NYSE KSU) traded down 1.32% during midday trading on Monday, reaching $107.25. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 355,815 shares. Kansas City Southern has a 12-month low of $79.05 and a 12-month high of $109.13. The company has a market cap of $11.31 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.58 and a beta of 0.81. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $104.59 and a 200-day moving average price of $96.84.
Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 21st. The transportation company reported $1.33 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.26 by $0.07. The firm had revenue of $656.40 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $627.81 million. Kansas City Southern had a return on equity of 11.40% and a net margin of 21.52%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 15.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $1.22 EPS. On average, equities research analysts predict that Kansas City Southern will post $5.20 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Kansas City Southern announced that its board has approved a share buyback program on Tuesday, August 15th that permits the company to buyback $800.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization permits the transportation company to buy up to 7.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.
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In related news, Director Antonio O. Garza sold 4,018 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $107.94, for a total value of $433,702.92. Following the transaction, the director now owns 4,920 shares in the company, valued at approximately $531,064.80. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, insider Delano Jose Guillermo Zozaya sold 6,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $102.93, for a total transaction of $617,580.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 42,087 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,332,014.91. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 14,469 shares of company stock valued at $1,522,510 in the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 0.95% of the company’s stock.
A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. QS Investors LLC lifted its stake in Kansas City Southern by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. QS Investors LLC now owns 1,320 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $138,000 after acquiring an additional 7 shares during the period. San Francisco Sentry Investment Group CA purchased a new stake in shares of Kansas City Southern in the 2nd quarter valued at $160,000. V Wealth Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Kansas City Southern in the 2nd quarter valued at $169,000. Pacer Advisors Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Kansas City Southern by 3.1% in the 1st quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 2,202 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $189,000 after acquiring an additional 66 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Envestnet Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Kansas City Southern by 2.4% in the first quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 2,250 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $194,000 after acquiring an additional 52 shares during the period. 84.59% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
About Kansas City Southern
Kansas City Southern (KCS) is a holding company. The Company has domestic and international rail operations in North America that are focused on the north/south freight corridor connecting commercial and industrial markets in the central United States with industrial cities in Mexico. The Company’s subsidiaries include The Kansas City Southern Railway Company (KCSR) and Kansas City Southern de Mexico, SA de C.V.
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