SunTrust Banks (STI) Rating Increased to Buy at Argus

SunTrust Banks (NYSE:STI) was upgraded by equities research analysts at Argus from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued on Monday, The Fly reports.

STI has been the topic of several other reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of SunTrust Banks from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $80.00 target price on the stock in a report on Wednesday, March 21st. Sanford C. Bernstein upgraded shares of SunTrust Banks from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 27th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. ValuEngine upgraded shares of SunTrust Banks from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, March 7th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $75.00 target price on shares of SunTrust Banks in a report on Thursday, April 5th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $75.00 target price on shares of SunTrust Banks in a report on Sunday, April 22nd. Seventeen investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and thirteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $70.50.

Shares of SunTrust Banks opened at $66.02 on Monday, according to MarketBeat Ratings. SunTrust Banks has a 12-month low of $51.96 and a 12-month high of $73.37. The stock has a market cap of $30.69 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.34, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.97 and a beta of 1.31. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.48, a current ratio of 0.93 and a quick ratio of 0.91.

SunTrust Banks (NYSE:STI) last posted its earnings results on Friday, April 20th. The financial services provider reported $1.29 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.11 by $0.18. The company had revenue of $2.26 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.29 billion. SunTrust Banks had a net margin of 24.92% and a return on equity of 10.05%. SunTrust Banks’s revenue was up .4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.91 EPS. equities analysts forecast that SunTrust Banks will post 5.3 earnings per share for the current year.

SunTrust Banks announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock repurchase program on Thursday, June 28th that allows the company to buyback $2.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the financial services provider to purchase up to 6.6% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are generally an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

In related news, COO Hugh S. Cummins III sold 11,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $69.00, for a total transaction of $759,000.00. Following the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 40,198 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,773,662. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Director Agnes Bundy Scanlan sold 1,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $67.35, for a total transaction of $101,025.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 21,250 shares of company stock worth $1,464,300. 0.52% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in STI. Virtu Financial LLC purchased a new stake in SunTrust Banks during the 4th quarter worth approximately $292,000. Investors Research Corp purchased a new stake in SunTrust Banks during the 4th quarter worth approximately $226,000. Alliancebernstein L.P. increased its stake in SunTrust Banks by 522.8% during the 4th quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 5,543,914 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $358,081,000 after buying an additional 4,653,780 shares during the period. AXA increased its stake in SunTrust Banks by 72.7% during the 4th quarter. AXA now owns 172,328 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $11,130,000 after buying an additional 72,527 shares during the period. Finally, Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. purchased a new stake in SunTrust Banks during the 4th quarter worth approximately $13,830,000. 83.63% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

SunTrust Banks Company Profile

SunTrust Banks, Inc operates as the holding company for SunTrust Bank that provides various financial services for consumers, businesses, corporations, and institutions in the United States. It operates through two segments, Consumer and Wholesale. The Consumer segment provides deposits and payments; home equity and personal credit lines; auto, student, and other lending products; credit cards; discount/online and full-service brokerage products; professional investment advisory products and services; and trust services, as well as family office solutions.

The Fly

Analyst Recommendations for SunTrust Banks (NYSE:STI)

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