Banner Co. (BANR) Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research to “Buy”

Banner Co. (NASDAQ:BANR) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued on Wednesday. The brokerage currently has a $61.00 price objective on the financial services provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price target indicates a potential upside of 10.81% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Banner Corporation is a bank holding company operating two commercial banks in five Western states through a network of branches offering a full range of deposit services and business, commercial real estate, construction, residential, agricultural and consumer loans. “

Analyst Recommendations for Banner (NASDAQ:BANR)

Shares of Banner (NASDAQ:BANR) opened at 55.05 on Wednesday. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $55.84 and its 200 day moving average is $53.15. Banner has a 1-year low of $38.77 and a 1-year high of $60.97. The company has a market capitalization of $1.83 billion, a PE ratio of 21.85 and a beta of 1.21.

Banner (NASDAQ:BANR) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, January 25th. The financial services provider reported $0.71 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.73 by $0.02. Banner had a return on equity of 7.05% and a net margin of 17.98%. The business had revenue of $116.63 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $116.59 million. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Banner will post $3.00 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, April 19th. Stockholders of record on Monday, April 10th were paid a $0.25 dividend. This is a positive change from Banner’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.23. This represents a $1.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.82%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, April 6th. Banner’s dividend payout ratio is currently 36.51%.

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In other news, Director Jesse G. Foster sold 3,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, February 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $59.08, for a total value of $177,240.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Director D Michael Jones sold 10,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, January 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $55.92, for a total transaction of $559,200.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders sold 26,411 shares of company stock worth $1,495,053. Insiders own 1.98% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of BANR. Rice Hall James & Associates LLC raised its stake in Banner by 30.2% in the first quarter. Rice Hall James & Associates LLC now owns 298,973 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $16,635,000 after buying an additional 69,264 shares in the last quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System raised its stake in Banner by 0.9% in the first quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 10,700 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $595,000 after buying an additional 100 shares in the last quarter. Creative Planning raised its stake in Banner by 0.3% in the first quarter. Creative Planning now owns 1,828 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $102,000 after buying an additional 6 shares in the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC raised its stake in Banner by 5.7% in the fourth quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 276,302 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $15,420,000 after buying an additional 14,975 shares in the last quarter. Finally, FFL Partners LLC purchased a new stake in Banner during the fourth quarter worth approximately $5,448,000. 82.51% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Banner Company Profile

Banner Corporation is a bank holding company. The Company is engaged in the business of planning, directing and coordinating the business activities of its subsidiaries, Banner Bank and Islanders Bank. Banner Bank is a Washington-chartered commercial bank. Banner Bank is a regional bank, which offers a range of commercial banking services and financial products to individuals, businesses and public sector entities in its primary market areas.

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