Citizens Financial Group Inc. (NYSE:CFG) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Friday.

According to Zacks, “Citizens Financial’s third-quarter 2016 earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimates on higher revenues. However, rising expenses and provisions remained headwinds. The company remains on track to implement TOP II and TOP III efficiency initiatives which are expected to boost performance. Notably, its TOP II efficiency initiatives are expected to result in a pre-tax benefit of $95–$100 million in 2016. Also, the company continues to benefit from improving loans and deposit balances and is well positioned to grow further as the U.S. economy is gaining traction. However, margin pressure, legal hassles and a stricter regulatory landscape across the finance sector continue to be major concerns for Citizens Financial.”

Several other analysts have also recently issued reports on the company. Wedbush started coverage on Citizens Financial Group in a research note on Thursday, October 6th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $29.00 target price on the stock. Citigroup Inc. lifted their price objective on Citizens Financial Group from $26.00 to $29.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 12th. Credit Suisse Group AG lifted their price objective on Citizens Financial Group from $23.00 to $26.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Thursday, September 8th. TheStreet raised Citizens Financial Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, September 23rd. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG cut Citizens Financial Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $27.00 price objective on the stock. in a research report on Tuesday, November 8th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $28.38.

Analyst Recommendations for Citizens Financial Group (NYSE:CFG)

Shares of Citizens Financial Group (NYSE:CFG) opened at 30.88 on Friday. Citizens Financial Group has a 12 month low of $18.04 and a 12 month high of $31.01. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $26.02 and its 200-day moving average price is $23.45. The stock has a market capitalization of $16.00 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.78 and a beta of 1.10.

Citizens Financial Group (NYSE:CFG) last posted its earnings results on Friday, October 21st. The company reported $0.52 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.49 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $1.38 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.31 billion. Citizens Financial Group had a return on equity of 4.88% and a net margin of 17.53%. Citizens Financial Group’s quarterly revenue was up 14.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.40 earnings per share. Equities analysts predict that Citizens Financial Group will post $1.93 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, November 16th. Investors of record on Wednesday, November 2nd will be issued a $0.12 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, October 31st. This represents a $0.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.55%. Citizens Financial Group’s payout ratio is currently 25.95%.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in CFG. Prudential PLC raised its position in shares of Citizens Financial Group by 15.0% in the first quarter. Prudential PLC now owns 115,000 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,409,000 after buying an additional 15,000 shares during the last quarter. HBK Investments L P purchased a new position in shares of Citizens Financial Group during the first quarter worth $892,000. Renaissance Technologies LLC purchased a new position in shares of Citizens Financial Group during the first quarter worth $33,774,000. National Pension Service raised its stake in shares of Citizens Financial Group by 4.5% in the first quarter. National Pension Service now owns 305,270 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,395,000 after buying an additional 13,260 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc raised its stake in shares of Citizens Financial Group by 15.5% in the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 2,229,891 shares of the company’s stock worth $46,718,000 after buying an additional 298,672 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 98.59% of the company’s stock.

About Citizens Financial Group

Citizens Financial Group, Inc is a retail bank holding company in the United States. The Company offers a range of retail and commercial banking products and services to individuals, institutions and companies. The Company operates in two segments: Consumer Banking and Commercial Banking. The Company’s Consumer Banking serves retail customers and small businesses.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:CFG

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