Investar Holding Corp (ISTR) Receives Consensus Recommendation of “Buy” from Analysts

Shares of Investar Holding Corp (NASDAQ:ISTR) have been assigned an average rating of “Buy” from the six ratings firms that are presently covering the company, MarketBeat Ratings reports. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating on the company. The average twelve-month price objective among analysts that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $27.67.

A number of equities research analysts recently issued reports on the stock. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Investar from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 14th. Sandler O’Neill set a $29.00 target price on shares of Investar and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, January 29th. Finally, Hovde Group reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $28.00 target price on shares of Investar in a research report on Friday, December 29th.

Investar (ISTR) opened at $24.55 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $214.05, a PE ratio of 24.31 and a beta of 0.33. Investar has a 1-year low of $19.80 and a 1-year high of $25.95. The company has a current ratio of 1.01, a quick ratio of 1.01 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.18.

Investar (NASDAQ:ISTR) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, January 25th. The financial services provider reported $0.34 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.33 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $13.78 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $13.54 million. Investar had a net margin of 14.35% and a return on equity of 6.37%. research analysts anticipate that Investar will post 1.72 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, January 31st. Investors of record on Wednesday, January 3rd were given a dividend of $0.0315 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, January 2nd. This represents a $0.13 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.51%. This is a boost from Investar’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.03. Investar’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 12.87%.

In related news, EVP Ryan P. Finnan sold 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, December 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $23.70, for a total transaction of $71,100.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 15,314 shares in the company, valued at approximately $362,941.80. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Company insiders own 8.83% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in ISTR. State Street Corp acquired a new stake in shares of Investar during the 2nd quarter worth about $2,510,000. Northern Trust Corp acquired a new stake in Investar in the 2nd quarter valued at about $2,114,000. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its position in Investar by 32.3% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 366,623 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $8,396,000 after acquiring an additional 89,433 shares in the last quarter. Maltese Capital Management LLC increased its position in Investar by 63.4% in the 4th quarter. Maltese Capital Management LLC now owns 185,000 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $4,459,000 after acquiring an additional 71,800 shares in the last quarter. Finally, TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC acquired a new stake in Investar in the 2nd quarter valued at about $495,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 56.41% of the company’s stock.

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About Investar

Investar Holding Corporation is financial holding company that conducts its operations through, Investar Bank (the Bank), which is a commercial bank. The Company offers a range of commercial and retail lending products throughout its market areas, including business loans to small to medium-sized businesses, as well as loans to individuals.

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