BB&T (BBT) Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research to “Buy”

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of BB&T (NYSE:BBT) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report report published on Tuesday. The firm currently has $56.00 target price on the insurance provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “BB&T’s shares have underperformed the industry over the past three months. Yet, the company has an impressive earnings surprise history, with not lagging the Zacks Consensus Estimate in any of the trailing four quarters. Consistent growth in loans and deposits, and higher interest rates is expected to lead to improved revenues. Also, the company's continuous expansion via acquisitions is likely to aid profitability. Though, mounting expenses and significant exposure to risky loans remain major concerns for the company, its efficient capital deployment activities reflect a solid balance sheet and liquidity position.”

A number of other equities research analysts also recently issued reports on the stock. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $54.00 price target on shares of BB&T in a research note on Friday, December 22nd. Wells Fargo & Co set a $51.00 price target on shares of BB&T and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Wednesday, December 20th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price target on shares of BB&T from $48.50 to $49.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. Piper Jaffray Companies reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $48.00 price target on shares of BB&T in a research note on Sunday, October 22nd. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reissued a buy rating and issued a $50.00 target price on shares of BB&T in a research note on Friday, October 20th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $50.67.

BB&T (NYSE BBT) traded up $0.58 during trading on Tuesday, reaching $50.49. 2,240,000 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 4,710,000. The stock has a market capitalization of $39,830.00, a P/E ratio of 18.77, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.06 and a beta of 1.00. The company has a current ratio of 0.86, a quick ratio of 0.85 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.78. BB&T has a 52 week low of $41.17 and a 52 week high of $51.11.

BB&T (NYSE:BBT) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The insurance provider reported $0.78 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.78. The company had revenue of $2.85 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.85 billion. BB&T had a net margin of 19.42% and a return on equity of 9.64%. BB&T’s revenue was up 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.76 earnings per share. sell-side analysts anticipate that BB&T will post 3.1 EPS for the current year.

In other news, insider Donna C. Goodrich sold 10,799 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $46.77, for a total value of $505,069.23. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 47,182 shares in the company, valued at $2,206,702.14. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Donna C. Goodrich sold 26,869 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $49.13, for a total transaction of $1,320,073.97. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 78,589 shares in the company, valued at $3,861,077.57. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 182,150 shares of company stock worth $8,712,859. Company insiders own 0.36% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Glassman Wealth Services grew its holdings in BB&T by 0.4% during the 2nd quarter. Glassman Wealth Services now owns 4,757 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $216,000 after acquiring an additional 18 shares in the last quarter. WMS Partners LLC boosted its holdings in shares of BB&T by 0.8% in the 2nd quarter. WMS Partners LLC now owns 4,527 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $206,000 after buying an additional 36 shares in the last quarter. Sii Investments Inc. WI boosted its holdings in shares of BB&T by 0.9% in the 2nd quarter. Sii Investments Inc. WI now owns 6,636 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $301,000 after buying an additional 58 shares in the last quarter. Schafer Cullen Capital Management Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of BB&T by 0.5% in the 2nd quarter. Schafer Cullen Capital Management Inc. now owns 14,105 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $641,000 after buying an additional 75 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Sandy Spring Bank boosted its holdings in shares of BB&T by 0.8% in the 2nd quarter. Sandy Spring Bank now owns 11,100 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $504,000 after buying an additional 85 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 65.28% of the company’s stock.

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About BB&T

BB&T Corporation is a financial holding company. The Company conducts its business operations primarily through its bank subsidiary, Branch Banking and Trust Company (Branch Bank), and other nonbank subsidiaries. Its segments include Community Banking, Residential Mortgage Banking, Dealer Financial Services, Specialized Lending, Insurance Holdings and Financial Services.

Analyst Recommendations for BB&T (NYSE:BBT)

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