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Southwest shares close lower on Wednesday, 35 737 MAX aircraft to be delivered through the end of 2021

Southwest Airlines Co (LUV) said on Wednesday that it would take delivery of 35 Boeing 737 MAX jets through the end of next year.

Those deliveries will include 16 leased aircraft, Southwest said.

The air carrier also noted that the 737 MAX would probably return to revenue service in March.

Shares of Southwest Airlines closed lower for the sixth time in the past ten trading sessions in New York on Wednesday. The stock went down 1.49% ($0.69) to $45.73, after touching an intraday low at $45.27 and an intraday high at $46.39.

Shares of Southwest Airlines Company have retreated 15.28% so far in 2020 compared with a 14.56% gain for the benchmark index, S&P 500 (SPX).

In 2019, Southwest Airlines Co’s stock went up 16.14%, thus, it again underperformed the S&P 500, which registered a 28.88% gain.

“Given the continued surge in COVID-19 cases and depressed revenue environment, the company continues to experience softness in leisure passenger demand and bookings for December 2020,” the air carrier said in a regulatory filing, cited by Reuters.

The airline now projects an average daily core cash burn of nearly $12 million during the fourth quarter. It had previously expected daily cash burn of $10 million to $11 million.

Analyst stock price forecast and recommendation

According to CNN Money, the 20 analysts, offering 12-month forecasts regarding Southwest Airlines’ stock price, have a median target of $50.50, with a high estimate of $65.00 and a low estimate of $40.00. The median estimate represents a 10.43% upside compared to the closing price of $45.73 on December 16th.

The same media also reported that at least 13 out of 23 surveyed investment analysts had rated Southwest Airlines’ stock as “Buy”, while 7 – as “Hold”. On the other hand, 1 analyst had recommended selling the stock.

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