Citizens Financial Group (CFG) Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research to “Buy”

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Citizens Financial Group (NYSE:CFG) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report sent to investors on Monday, December 4th. Zacks Investment Research currently has $46.00 price target on the bank’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Citizens Financial have outperformed the industry over the last three months. This performance was supported by the company’s impressive earnings surprise history. It surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in all the trailing four quarters. The company remains on track to implement TOP III efficiency initiatives, which are expected to boost earnings further. It also launched TOP IV initiatives which are anticipated to achieve pre-tax benefit of $95-$110 million by the end of 2018. Further, it continues to benefit from improving loans and deposit balances, and is well positioned to grow as the U.S. economy is gaining traction. Though, significant exposure to commercial loans remains a concern, Citizens Financial’s involvement in steady capital deployment activities continue to inspire shareholders’ confidence.”

Other equities analysts have also issued reports about the stock. TheStreet upgraded shares of Citizens Financial Group from a c rating to an a+ rating in a research report on Monday, November 27th. Oppenheimer restated a hold rating on shares of Citizens Financial Group in a report on Monday, October 23rd. Barclays increased their price objective on shares of Citizens Financial Group from $39.00 to $41.00 and gave the stock an equal weight rating in a research report on Monday, October 23rd. Bank of America reaffirmed an underperform rating and issued a $40.00 target price (down previously from $41.00) on shares of Citizens Financial Group in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. Finally, Citigroup reaffirmed a neutral rating and issued a $42.00 target price (up previously from $38.00) on shares of Citizens Financial Group in a research report on Monday, October 9th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Citizens Financial Group currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $40.85.

Citizens Financial Group (NYSE CFG) traded down $0.46 during mid-day trading on Monday, hitting $41.98. 2,511,768 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 4,105,867. The firm has a market cap of $20,880.11, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.00, a PEG ratio of 1.08 and a beta of 1.37. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.67, a quick ratio of 0.97 and a current ratio of 0.98. Citizens Financial Group has a 1-year low of $31.51 and a 1-year high of $42.93.

Citizens Financial Group (NYSE:CFG) last released its earnings results on Friday, October 20th. The bank reported $0.68 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.64 by $0.04. The firm had revenue of $1.44 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.43 billion. Citizens Financial Group had a net margin of 20.26% and a return on equity of 6.44%. The business’s revenue was up 4.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.52 EPS. sell-side analysts anticipate that Citizens Financial Group will post 2.59 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, Director Wendy A. Watson sold 4,000 shares of Citizens Financial Group stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $40.31, for a total transaction of $161,240.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 12,917 shares in the company, valued at approximately $520,684.27. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. 0.21% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp lifted its position in shares of Citizens Financial Group by 4.4% in the 2nd quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp now owns 1,133,028 shares of the bank’s stock worth $40,426,000 after purchasing an additional 47,855 shares during the period. Barings LLC lifted its position in shares of Citizens Financial Group by 45.1% during the 3rd quarter. Barings LLC now owns 86,900 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $3,291,000 after acquiring an additional 27,000 shares during the period. Teachers Retirement System of The State of Kentucky lifted its position in shares of Citizens Financial Group by 0.7% during the 3rd quarter. Teachers Retirement System of The State of Kentucky now owns 1,347,000 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $51,011,000 after acquiring an additional 8,700 shares during the period. Lazard Asset Management LLC lifted its position in shares of Citizens Financial Group by 16,695.7% during the 2nd quarter. Lazard Asset Management LLC now owns 2,779,356 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $99,167,000 after acquiring an additional 2,762,808 shares during the period. Finally, Boston Advisors LLC lifted its position in shares of Citizens Financial Group by 10.4% during the 3rd quarter. Boston Advisors LLC now owns 660,245 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $25,003,000 after acquiring an additional 61,942 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 98.48% of the company’s stock.

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About Citizens Financial Group

Citizens Financial Group, Inc is a retail bank holding company. The Company operates through two segments: Consumer Banking and Commercial Banking. Its Consumer Banking serves retail customers and small businesses. Consumer Banking products and services include deposit products, mortgage and home equity lending, auto financing, student loans, personal unsecured lines and loans, credit cards, business loans, wealth management and investment services.

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