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Analysts Are Recommending ‘Buys’ on DAL ahead of Its Q4 Results


Jan. 9 2019, Updated 10:30 a.m. ET

Bullish stance

Delta Air Lines (DAL) has a consensus rating of ~1.65 from analysts polled by Reuters, and there’s a consensus “buy” opinion on the stock. Analysts are bullish about Delta and foresee strong growth in its stock price.

The company’s consistently strong quarterly performances and encouraging earnings outlook for the fourth quarter have instilled confidence among analysts, as we can see reflected in their ratings.

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Most analysts have recommended “strong buys” or “buys” on Delta. These recommendations represent ~95% of the 20 analysts covering the stock. The remaining 5% of analysts have recommended “holds” on the stock. Analysts have given Delta a target price of $68.21, a potential ~43% surge from its current level of $47.85.

Delta stock has received sharp upward estimate revisions for its EPS in 2018 and 2019. The mean estimate for the company’s 2018 EPS increased to $5.58 from $5.51 on October 10. Its 2019 EPS estimate has improved to $6.66 from $6.35.

Analysts raised their target prices on Delta stock after the company released its third-quarter earnings results on October 11, 2018. Their current consensus estimate of $68.21 is higher than their consensus estimate of $67.13 prior to Delta’s third-quarter earnings report.

Peers’ ratings

Analysts are bullish on the other players in the industry (IYT). They’ve provided “buy” recommendations on Delta’s top peers United Continental (UAL), Southwest Airlines (LUV), and American Airlines (AAL).

Six out of 19 analysts have given United Continental “strong buy” ratings, four have given it “buy” ratings, and the remaining nine have given it “hold” ratings. Analysts’ target price of $105.35 represents a potential 26.6% increase from its current price of $83.23.

Seven out of 21 analysts have given Southwest Airlines “strong buy” ratings, seven have given it “buy” ratings, six have given it “hold” ratings, and one has given it a “sell” rating. Its target price of $62.05 represents a potential 29.6% increase from its current price of $47.87.

Five out of 19 analysts have given American Airlines “strong buy” ratings, nine have given it “buy” ratings, and five have given it “hold” ratings. With their consensus target price of $48.72, analysts expect a 47.9% rise from the stock’s current market price of $32.95.


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