Alaska Air Group (ALK) Earns Hold Rating from Analysts at Vertical Research

Vertical Research assumed coverage on shares of Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK) in a research note issued to investors on Monday, February 4th, The Fly reports. The brokerage issued a hold rating on the transportation company’s stock.

Several other analysts have also weighed in on the company. Goldman Sachs Group raised Alaska Air Group from a buy rating to a conviction-buy rating in a report on Wednesday, November 28th. TheStreet upgraded Alaska Air Group from a c+ rating to a b- rating in a research report on Monday, November 26th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded Alaska Air Group from an underweight rating to a neutral rating and set a $67.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Thursday, January 10th. Imperial Capital restated an outperform rating and issued a $90.00 price objective on shares of Alaska Air Group in a research report on Tuesday, January 15th. Finally, Wolfe Research downgraded Alaska Air Group from an outperform rating to a hold rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 9th. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, nine have assigned a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $77.50.

Alaska Air Group stock traded down $0.39 during trading hours on Monday, hitting $61.31. The stock had a trading volume of 1,952,577 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,336,142. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.43, a quick ratio of 0.69 and a current ratio of 0.61. The firm has a market capitalization of $7.68 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.75, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.67 and a beta of 0.88. Alaska Air Group has a 1-year low of $57.28 and a 1-year high of $74.83.

Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, January 24th. The transportation company reported $0.75 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.73 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $2.06 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.06 billion. Alaska Air Group had a return on equity of 15.20% and a net margin of 5.29%. Alaska Air Group’s revenue was up 6.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.83 earnings per share. As a group, sell-side analysts forecast that Alaska Air Group will post 6.65 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 7th. Investors of record on Tuesday, February 19th will be given a dividend of $0.35 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, February 15th. This is an increase from Alaska Air Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.32. This represents a $1.40 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.28%. Alaska Air Group’s dividend payout ratio is 31.39%.

In related news, EVP Andrew R. Harrison sold 4,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, February 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.93, for a total transaction of $251,720.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 22,167 shares in the company, valued at $1,394,969.31. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director J Kenneth Thompson sold 2,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $73.12, for a total value of $182,800.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 36,353 shares in the company, valued at $2,658,131.36. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 11,276 shares of company stock worth $734,487 over the last quarter. 0.56% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its holdings in shares of Alaska Air Group by 0.4% in the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,330,179 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $91,595,000 after purchasing an additional 5,394 shares during the period. Standard Life Aberdeen plc grew its stake in shares of Alaska Air Group by 18.5% in the third quarter. Standard Life Aberdeen plc now owns 26,075 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $1,796,000 after buying an additional 4,076 shares in the last quarter. Davidson Investment Advisors grew its stake in shares of Alaska Air Group by 2.4% in the third quarter. Davidson Investment Advisors now owns 182,700 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $12,581,000 after buying an additional 4,211 shares in the last quarter. Verity & Verity LLC grew its stake in shares of Alaska Air Group by 17.1% in the fourth quarter. Verity & Verity LLC now owns 4,250 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $259,000 after buying an additional 620 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Scout Investments Inc. grew its stake in shares of Alaska Air Group by 3.2% in the third quarter. Scout Investments Inc. now owns 459,772 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $31,660,000 after buying an additional 14,463 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 90.84% of the company’s stock.

About Alaska Air Group

Alaska Air Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides passengers and cargo air transportation services. It also focuses on providing ground and ramp handling services to airlines. The company operates through three segments: Mainline, Regional, and Horizon. It has a network of approximately 1,200 daily flights to 118 destinations across the United States, Mexico, Canada, and Costa Rica.

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Analyst Recommendations for Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK)

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