Cullen/Frost Bankers, Inc. (CFR) Lowered to “Sell” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers, Inc. (NYSE:CFR) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report released on Tuesday, October 17th.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Cullen/Frost have underperformed the industry over the last six months. Estimates have declined lately ahead of the company’s Q3 earnings release. However, the company boasts an impressive earnings surprise history. It has surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in three of the trailing four quarters. With a rising interest rate environment and improving non-interest bearing deposits, the company's net interest income and net interest margin is expected to grow. However, rising costs stemming mainly from expanding franchise are likely to deter bottom-line growth to some extent. Also, the company’s risky loan portfolio keeps us apprehensive.”



CFR has been the topic of a number of other research reports. ValuEngine lowered shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Thursday, September 7th. Piper Jaffray Companies reiterated a hold rating and issued a $96.50 price target on shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers in a report on Friday, September 1st. BidaskClub lowered shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a report on Friday, August 11th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods restated a hold rating and set a $95.00 target price on shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers in a report on Friday, September 29th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC restated a hold rating and set a $95.00 target price on shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers in a report on Friday, July 14th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have issued a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the stock. Cullen/Frost Bankers currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $97.95.

Shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers (CFR) traded up 0.68% on Tuesday, hitting $101.15. The stock had a trading volume of 375,713 shares. Cullen/Frost Bankers has a one year low of $72.96 and a one year high of $102.75. The stock has a market cap of $6.50 billion, a PE ratio of 19.93 and a beta of 1.35. The company’s 50 day moving average is $93.08 and its 200 day moving average is $92.10.

Cullen/Frost Bankers (NYSE:CFR) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The bank reported $1.41 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.31 by $0.10. Cullen/Frost Bankers had a net margin of 28.49% and a return on equity of 11.23%. The firm had revenue of $300.83 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $329.62 million. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $1.24 earnings per share. Equities research analysts predict that Cullen/Frost Bankers will post $5.23 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 15th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, November 30th will be paid a dividend of $0.57 per share. This represents a $2.28 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.27%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 29th. Cullen/Frost Bankers’s payout ratio is 44.79%.

Cullen/Frost Bankers announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase program on Thursday, October 26th that authorizes the company to repurchase $150.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the bank to repurchase up to 2.4% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of CFR. BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers by 3,918.0% in the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 4,695,956 shares of the bank’s stock worth $417,800,000 after acquiring an additional 4,579,082 shares during the period. Principal Financial Group Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers by 177.5% in the 2nd quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 1,830,898 shares of the bank’s stock worth $171,940,000 after acquiring an additional 1,171,078 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers by 16.5% in the 1st quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 5,356,366 shares of the bank’s stock worth $476,557,000 after acquiring an additional 758,710 shares during the period. Crawford Investment Counsel Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $28,037,000. Finally, Davis R M Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Cullen/Frost Bankers in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $13,407,000. 80.62% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Cullen/Frost Bankers Company Profile

Cullen/Frost Bankers, Inc is a financial holding company and a bank holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides a range of products and services throughout Texas markets. The Company’s segments include Banking, Frost Wealth Advisors and Non-Banks. The Banking segment includes both commercial and consumer banking services, and Frost Insurance Agency.

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Analyst Recommendations for Cullen/Frost Bankers (NYSE:CFR)

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