Southwest shares fall for a fourth straight session on Wednesday, FAA announces three reassignments in office overseeing airline

June 27, 2019 7:18 am

Three managers have been reassigned in the Federal Aviation Administration’s office, which oversees Southwest Airlines Company (LUV), Reuters reported by citing a person familiar with the matter.

According to an earlier report by the Wall Street Journal, citing knowledgeable sources, the reassignments were also “prompted by allegations that managers retaliated against whistleblowers.”

Shares of Southwest Airlines closed lower for a fourth consecutive trading session in New York on Wednesday. The stock went down 0.59% ($0.30) to $50.70, after touching an intraday low at $50.35, or a price level not seen since June 11th ($50.27).

Shares of Southwest Airlines Company have risen 9.08% so far in 2019 compared with a 16.23% gain for the benchmark index, S&P 500 (SPX).

In 2018, Southwest Airlines Co’s stock went down 28.98%, thus, it again underperformed the S&P 500, which registered a 6.24% loss.

In June last year, the Transportation Department’s inspector general said that it had received a complaint related to “a number of operational issues at Southwest Airlines, such as alleged pilot training deficiencies, which raise concerns about FAA’s oversight of the carrier.” Subsequently, a review was initiated.

In February this year, the Wall Street Journal reported that Southwest Airlines was being probed by the FAA in relation with widespread failure to accurately track the combined weight of checked bags, loaded on its aircraft.

In a statement, the Federal Aviation Administration said it takes “allegations regarding safety oversight and retaliation seriously.” “To uphold these principles, we take appropriate action as necessary. We do not comment on personnel matters.”

Meanwhile, in a statement, Southwest Airlines noted that it had no “insight to share on the recent staffing decisions made within the FAA.”

According to CNN Money, the 18 analysts, offering 12-month forecasts regarding Southwest Airlines’ stock price, have a median target of $59.00, with a high estimate of $75.00 and a low estimate of $44.00. The median estimate represents a 16.37% upside compared to the closing price of $50.70 on June 26th.

The same media also reported that 11 out of 22 surveyed investment analysts had rated Southwest Airlines’ stock as “Hold”, while 8 – as “Buy”. On the other hand, 2 analysts had recommended selling the stock.

Weekly Pivot Levels

By using the traditional method of calculation, the weekly levels of importance for Southwest Airlines Company (LUV) are presented as follows:

Central Pivot Point – $51.53
R1 – $52.18
R2 – $53.10
R3 – $53.75
R4 – $54.39

S1 – $50.61
S2 – $49.96
S3 – $49.04
S4 – $48.11

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