Associated Banc-Corp (NYSE:ASB) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Tuesday. The firm currently has a $26.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s target price would suggest a potential upside of 12.55% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Associated Banc-Corp’s third-quarter 2016 earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Continued top-line growth was partly offset by higher operating expenses and a drastic rise in credit costs. The company is expected to continue witnessing organic growth, driven by improving loan and deposit balances. In addition, the company’s branch consolidation efforts and inorganic growth strategy will likely enhance profitability going forward. Also, given a strong balance sheet position, the company is expected to continue with its capital deployment activities. However, margin pressure is likely to keep financials under strain in the near-term. Further, mounting expenses, increased dependence on commercial loans and lack of geographic exposure are the other major concerns.”

ASB has been the subject of several other research reports. Deutsche Bank AG raised their price objective on shares of Associated Banc-Corp from $20.00 to $22.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 11th. DA Davidson started coverage on shares of Associated Banc-Corp in a research report on Monday, October 3rd. They set an “underperform” rating and a $18.00 price objective for the company. Barclays PLC raised their price objective on shares of Associated Banc-Corp from $19.00 to $20.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 16th. Finally, Jefferies Group restated a “buy” rating on shares of Associated Banc-Corp in a research report on Monday, August 1st. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $20.29.

Analyst Recommendations for Associated Banc-Corp (NYSE:ASB)

Associated Banc-Corp (NYSE:ASB) opened at 23.10 on Tuesday. The company’s 50-day moving average is $20.57 and its 200 day moving average is $19.05. The firm has a market cap of $3.44 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.41 and a beta of 1.18. Associated Banc-Corp has a 12 month low of $15.45 and a 12 month high of $23.60.

Associated Banc-Corp (NYSE:ASB) last released its earnings results on Thursday, October 20th. The company reported $0.34 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.32 by $0.02. Associated Banc-Corp had a net margin of 16.55% and a return on equity of 6.46%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.31 EPS. On average, equities research analysts predict that Associated Banc-Corp will post $1.24 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 15th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, December 1st will be issued a $0.12 dividend. This represents a $0.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.08%. This is a boost from Associated Banc-Corp’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.11. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, November 29th. Associated Banc-Corp’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 36.98%.

In other Associated Banc-Corp news, CFO Moral-Niles Christopher Del sold 4,814 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $19.57, for a total value of $94,209.98. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, insider John A. Utz sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $19.54, for a total transaction of $39,080.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 44,290 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $865,426.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 2.09% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in ASB. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank boosted its position in shares of Associated Banc-Corp by 11.8% in the third quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 5,382 shares of the company’s stock valued at $105,000 after buying an additional 566 shares during the last quarter. Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC boosted its stake in Associated Banc-Corp by 0.7% in the second quarter. Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC now owns 6,304 shares of the company’s stock valued at $108,000 after buying an additional 41 shares in the last quarter. Quantbot Technologies LP bought a new stake in Associated Banc-Corp during the third quarter valued at approximately $110,000. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC boosted its stake in Associated Banc-Corp by 3,408.6% in the third quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 5,684 shares of the company’s stock valued at $111,000 after buying an additional 5,522 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Schonfeld Strategic Advisors LLC bought a new stake in Associated Banc-Corp during the first quarter valued at approximately $183,000. Institutional investors own 77.62% of the company’s stock.

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Associated Banc-Corp Company Profile

Associated Banc-Corp is a bank holding company. The Company, through its banking subsidiary Associated Bank, National Association (the Bank) and various nonbanking subsidiaries, provides a range of banking and nonbanking products and services to individuals. The Company operates through three segments: Corporate and Commercial Specialty; Community, Consumer, and Business, and Risk Management and Shared Services.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:ASB

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