Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of SunTrust Banks Inc. (NYSE:STI) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday morning. The brokerage currently has $49.00 target price on the financial services provider’s stock.
According to Zacks, “SunTrust’s cost saving strategies has borne positive results as it continues to witness a downward trend in expenses. Further, the company remains well positioned for future growth given its improving credit quality. Also, the gradually stabilizing energy sector as well as economic recovery will aid the company’s credit quality. Moreover, the company's steady capital deployment activities enhance shareholder value. However, a persistent low interest rate scenario affects the company’s top line items. NIM will continue to remain under pressure unless there is any significant increase in interest rates. Also, exposure to risky assets and increasing dependence on residential and commercial loan portfolio is expected to weigh on the company’s profitability in the near term.”
A number of other equities research analysts have also commented on STI. Nomura reaffirmed a hold rating on shares of SunTrust Banks in a research report on Saturday, July 9th. Deutsche Bank AG reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of SunTrust Banks in a research report on Wednesday, June 15th. Compass Point raised their price target on SunTrust Banks from $45.00 to $48.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 26th. Robert W. Baird raised SunTrust Banks from an underperform rating to a neutral rating and set a $41.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Thursday, August 25th. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reissued a market perform rating and issued a $45.00 target price on shares of SunTrust Banks in a research report on Friday, July 15th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating, thirteen have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $44.45.
Shares of SunTrust Banks (NYSE:STI) opened at 42.72 on Wednesday. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $43.24 and its 200-day moving average price is $41.29. The company has a market cap of $21.42 billion, a PE ratio of 11.57 and a beta of 1.31. SunTrust Banks has a 12 month low of $31.07 and a 12 month high of $45.24.
SunTrust Banks (NYSE:STI) last released its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 22nd. The financial services provider reported $0.94 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.88 by $0.06. The company had revenue of $2.19 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.14 billion. SunTrust Banks had a return on equity of 8.53% and a net margin of 22.31%. SunTrust Banks’s revenue was up 6.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.89 earnings per share. Equities analysts predict that SunTrust Banks will post $3.51 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 15th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, August 31st were issued a $0.26 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Monday, August 29th. This is a boost from SunTrust Banks’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.24. This represents a $1.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.43%. SunTrust Banks’s payout ratio is currently 28.18%.
In other SunTrust Banks news, insider Susan S. Johnson sold 1,118 shares of SunTrust Banks stock in a transaction on Tuesday, July 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $42.40, for a total value of $47,403.20. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 1,119 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $47,445.60. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. 0.67% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. AXA bought a new position in shares of SunTrust Banks during the second quarter valued at $127,000. Amica Retiree Medical Trust bought a new position in shares of SunTrust Banks during the second quarter valued at $129,000. Euclid Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of SunTrust Banks during the second quarter valued at $140,000. Balentine LLC boosted its position in shares of SunTrust Banks by 13.0% in the first quarter. Balentine LLC now owns 4,254 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $153,000 after buying an additional 488 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Washington Trust Bank boosted its position in shares of SunTrust Banks by 2.1% in the second quarter. Washington Trust Bank now owns 4,420 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $182,000 after buying an additional 90 shares in the last quarter. 82.37% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
About SunTrust Banks
SunTrust Banks, Inc is a bank holding company and a financial holding company. Through its principal subsidiary, SunTrust Bank, the Company offers a line of financial services for consumers and businesses, including deposit, credit, mortgage banking, and trust and investment services. The Company’s other subsidiaries provide asset and wealth management, securities brokerage, and capital market services.
For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com
Receive News & Ratings for SunTrust Banks Inc. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for SunTrust Banks Inc. and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.