Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Union Pacific Corporation (NYSE:UNP) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Tuesday morning. The firm currently has $121.00 price objective on the railroad operator’s stock.
According to Zacks, “We are impressed by Union Pacific's efforts to control costs. Lower costs also benefitted the company's fourth-quarter earnings per share. The bottom line not only surpassed expectations but also expanded significantly on a year-over-year basis. Operating ratio (operating expenses as a percentage of revenues) came in at 62% in the quarter compared with 63.2% a year ago. Apart from the earnings beat, the company's revenues topped expectations in the fourth quarter. The top line, however, declined on a year-over-year basis, mainly due to coal woes. Coal-related headwinds resulted in the shares of company underperforming the broader market in the last one year. Nonetheless, we are impressed by the company's efforts to reward investors. We are also impressed by the company's $3.1 billion 2017 capital plan. The plan complements the company's efforts to promote safety and enhance productivity.”
UNP has been the subject of several other research reports. RBC Capital Markets lifted their price target on Union Pacific Corporation from $111.00 to $115.00 and gave the company a sector perform rating in a research note on Friday, January 20th. Royal Bank Of Canada lifted their price target on Union Pacific Corporation from $111.00 to $115.00 and gave the company a sector perform rating in a research note on Friday, January 20th. Loop Capital restated a hold rating and issued a $96.00 price target on shares of Union Pacific Corporation in a research note on Sunday, October 23rd. Seaport Global Securities started coverage on Union Pacific Corporation in a research note on Monday, October 24th. They issued a buy rating and a $100.00 price target for the company. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein restated an outperform rating and issued a $110.00 price target on shares of Union Pacific Corporation in a research note on Sunday, October 23rd. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating, thirteen have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. Union Pacific Corporation has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $101.55.
Shares of Union Pacific Corporation (NYSE:UNP) opened at 109.16 on Tuesday. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $106.22 and its 200-day moving average price is $98.81. Union Pacific Corporation has a 12 month low of $77.07 and a 12 month high of $111.38. The stock has a market capitalization of $88.83 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.53 and a beta of 0.71.
Union Pacific Corporation (NYSE:UNP) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, January 19th. The railroad operator reported $1.39 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.33 by $0.06. The business earned $5.20 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.09 billion. Union Pacific Corporation had a return on equity of 20.88% and a net margin of 21.23%. The company’s revenue was down .8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $1.31 EPS. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Union Pacific Corporation will post $5.64 EPS for the current year.
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The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 31st. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, February 28th will be given a $0.605 dividend. This represents a $2.42 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.22%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, February 24th. Union Pacific Corporation’s payout ratio is 47.64%.
In other Union Pacific Corporation news, Director Andrew H. Card, Jr. sold 4,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $109.53, for a total value of $438,120.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 22,400 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,453,472. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, EVP Diane K. Duren sold 2,840 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $98.98, for a total value of $281,103.20. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 128,701 shares in the company, valued at approximately $12,738,824.98. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 44,838 shares of company stock worth $4,675,505. 0.14% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Horizon Kinetics LLC raised its stake in Union Pacific Corporation by 7.8% in the fourth quarter. Horizon Kinetics LLC now owns 13,344 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $1,384,000 after buying an additional 969 shares in the last quarter. Congress Asset Management Co. MA bought a new stake in Union Pacific Corporation during the fourth quarter worth $4,522,000. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. raised its stake in Union Pacific Corporation by 6.0% in the fourth quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 100,516 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $10,415,000 after buying an additional 5,713 shares in the last quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC raised its stake in Union Pacific Corporation by 389.8% in the fourth quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 764,049 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $79,217,000 after buying an additional 608,064 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Guggenheim Capital LLC raised its stake in Union Pacific Corporation by 13.2% in the fourth quarter. Guggenheim Capital LLC now owns 479,231 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $49,686,000 after buying an additional 55,777 shares in the last quarter. 79.43% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Union Pacific Corporation Company Profile
Union Pacific Corporation operates through its principal operating company, Union Pacific Railroad Company. Union Pacific Railroad Company links approximately 20 states in the western two-thirds of the country by rail, providing link in the supply chain. The Company’s business mix includes agricultural products, automotive, chemicals, coal, industrial products and intermodal.
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