Short Interest in Old Dominion Freight Line (NASDAQ:ODFL) Grows By 23.2%

Old Dominion Freight Line (NASDAQ:ODFL) was the target of a significant increase in short interest in the month of August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 4,481,700 shares, an increase of 23.2% from the July 31st total of 3,638,700 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 547,500 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 8.2 days. Currently, 6.3% of the shares of the stock are short sold.

Several equities research analysts recently issued reports on the company. Robert W. Baird set a $162.00 price target on Old Dominion Freight Line and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, July 26th. Bank of America restated a “neutral” rating and set a $150.00 target price (up from $144.00) on shares of Old Dominion Freight Line in a research note on Thursday, June 20th. Morgan Stanley set a $146.00 target price on Old Dominion Freight Line and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, August 9th. BidaskClub upgraded Old Dominion Freight Line from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, August 2nd. Finally, KeyCorp upped their target price on Old Dominion Freight Line from $165.00 to $175.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Friday, July 26th. Nine equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $152.08.

NASDAQ ODFL traded up $0.21 on Friday, hitting $173.92. 161,278 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 519,562. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $164.53 and a 200-day moving average of $151.34. The company has a current ratio of 1.92, a quick ratio of 1.92 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.02. Old Dominion Freight Line has a 52 week low of $115.00 and a 52 week high of $176.22. The stock has a market cap of $13.88 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.57, a P/E/G ratio of 2.48 and a beta of 1.50.

Old Dominion Freight Line (NASDAQ:ODFL) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 25th. The transportation company reported $2.16 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $2.11 by $0.05. Old Dominion Freight Line had a return on equity of 23.57% and a net margin of 15.48%. The firm had revenue of $1.06 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.08 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $1.99 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 2.6% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, analysts predict that Old Dominion Freight Line will post 7.92 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, September 18th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, September 4th will be paid a dividend of $0.17 per share. This represents a $0.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.39%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, September 3rd. Old Dominion Freight Line’s payout ratio is presently 9.21%.

Old Dominion Freight Line declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock repurchase program on Thursday, May 16th that authorizes the company to buyback $350.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the transportation company to purchase up to 2.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are usually a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

In related news, Chairman Earl E. Congdon sold 56,400 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $166.53, for a total value of $9,392,292.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 10,854 shares in the company, valued at $1,807,516.62. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, insider David S. Congdon sold 30,150 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $165.51, for a total value of $4,990,126.50. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 13,385 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,215,351.35. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 87,799 shares of company stock valued at $14,586,493. 11.90% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its holdings in Old Dominion Freight Line by 1.1% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 656,280 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $81,044,000 after acquiring an additional 6,885 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in Old Dominion Freight Line by 0.5% in the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 685,323 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $84,580,000 after acquiring an additional 3,291 shares during the period. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. lifted its holdings in Old Dominion Freight Line by 6.7% in the first quarter. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. now owns 6,243 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $901,000 after acquiring an additional 390 shares during the period. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System lifted its holdings in Old Dominion Freight Line by 4.3% in the first quarter. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System now owns 74,512 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $10,759,000 after acquiring an additional 3,050 shares during the period. Finally, South Dakota Investment Council acquired a new stake in Old Dominion Freight Line in the first quarter valued at $667,000. Institutional investors own 71.58% of the company’s stock.

Old Dominion Freight Line Company Profile

Old Dominion Freight Line, Inc operates as a less-than-truckload (LTL) motor carrier in the United States and North America. It provides regional, inter-regional, and national LTL services, including expedited transportation. The company also offers various value-added services, such as container drayage, truckload brokerage, and supply chain consulting.

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