BB&T Corporation (NYSE:BBT) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report released on Friday.

According to Zacks, “BB&T’s shares have underperformed the industry over the past three months. The company has impressive earnings surprise history, with not lagging the Zacks Consensus Estimate in all the trailing four quarters. The bank’s third quarter 2017 results benefited from higher revenues and a fall in credit cost, while a rise in operation expenses was a headwind. Strategic acquisitions, consistent growth in loans and deposits, and higher interest rates will further lead to improved profitability. Nevertheless, mounting expenses due to acquisitions and branch consolidation efforts are expected to hurt bottom-line growth. he company intends to close nearly 170 branches by the end of this year. The company’s exposure to risky loans also continues to be a near-term concern.”

Several other research firms have also commented on BBT. SunTrust Banks, Inc. reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $50.00 price target on shares of BB&T Corporation in a research report on Thursday, October 12th. Wells Fargo & Company initiated coverage on BB&T Corporation in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. They issued a “market perform” rating and a $44.00 price target for the company. Piper Jaffray Companies reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $48.00 price target on shares of BB&T Corporation in a research report on Sunday, October 22nd. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $49.00 price target on shares of BB&T Corporation in a research report on Friday, September 15th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets lifted their price target on BB&T Corporation from $48.00 to $49.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Friday, October 20th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have given a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. BB&T Corporation has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $49.17.

BB&T Corporation (NYSE:BBT) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The insurance provider reported $0.78 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.78. The firm had revenue of $2.85 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.85 billion. BB&T Corporation had a return on equity of 9.64% and a net margin of 19.42%. The business’s revenue was up 1.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.76 earnings per share.

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In related news, EVP W Bennett Bradley sold 7,762 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, October 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.16, for a total value of $373,817.92. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 24,341 shares in the company, valued at $1,172,262.56. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Christopher L. Henson sold 42,233 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, October 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.56, for a total value of $2,008,601.48. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 207,620 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $9,874,407.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 180,103 shares of company stock valued at $8,618,346 in the last quarter. 0.36% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Glassman Wealth Services boosted its holdings in shares of BB&T Corporation by 0.4% in the second quarter. Glassman Wealth Services now owns 4,757 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $216,000 after purchasing an additional 18 shares during the period. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America raised its stake in BB&T Corporation by 0.7% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 3,130 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $140,000 after buying an additional 21 shares in the last quarter. WMS Partners LLC raised its stake in BB&T Corporation by 0.8% in the second quarter. WMS Partners LLC now owns 4,527 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $206,000 after buying an additional 36 shares in the last quarter. Canal Capital Management LLC raised its stake in BB&T Corporation by 0.6% in the second quarter. Canal Capital Management LLC now owns 7,832 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $356,000 after buying an additional 48 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Sii Investments Inc. WI raised its stake in BB&T Corporation by 0.9% in the second quarter. Sii Investments Inc. WI now owns 6,636 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $301,000 after buying an additional 58 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 65.82% of the company’s stock.

BB&T Corporation Company Profile

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.

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Analyst Recommendations for BB&T Corporation (NYSE:BBT)

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