Zions Bancorp (NASDAQ:ZION) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Friday. The firm presently has a $44.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price target points to a potential upside of 12.47% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Zion shares have outperformed the Zacks categorized Banks-West industry over the last three months. Its third-quarter 2016 earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate on higher revenues. However, rise in expenses and provisions acted as headwinds. The company’s consistent growth in loans and deposits indicates the potential for further improvement in revenues in the quarters ahead. Also, it remains on track to exceed its cost savings target of $120 million in 2017. However, concentration risk, asset-sensitive balance sheet and regulatory restrictions continue to be matters of concern for the company.”

Several other analysts have also issued reports on the stock. Raymond James Financial Inc. lowered shares of Zions Bancorp from a “strong-buy” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 6th. Morgan Stanley lowered shares of Zions Bancorp from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and increased their price target for the stock from $34.00 to $38.00 in a research report on Wednesday, November 16th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Credit Suisse Group AG reiterated an “outperform” rating on shares of Zions Bancorp in a research report on Thursday, August 18th. RBC Capital Markets reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $40.00 price target (up previously from $32.00) on shares of Zions Bancorp in a research report on Thursday, November 10th. Finally, FBR & Co lowered shares of Zions Bancorp from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $32.00 price target on the stock. in a research report on Tuesday, October 11th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have assigned a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Zions Bancorp presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $35.10.

Analyst Recommendations for Zions Bancorp (NASDAQ:ZION)

Zions Bancorp (NASDAQ:ZION) traded down 0.05% during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $39.10. 922,742 shares of the company were exchanged. The company has a market cap of $7.97 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.48 and a beta of 1.37. Zions Bancorp has a 12-month low of $19.65 and a 12-month high of $39.23. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $33.56 and its 200-day moving average is $29.41.

Zions Bancorp (NASDAQ:ZION) last announced its earnings results on Monday, October 24th. The company reported $0.57 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.50 by $0.07. Zions Bancorp had a net margin of 17.81% and a return on equity of 6.16%. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.41 EPS. Equities research analysts predict that Zions Bancorp will post $1.92 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, November 23rd. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, November 16th were issued a dividend of $0.08 per share. This represents a $0.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.82%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, November 14th. Zions Bancorp’s dividend payout ratio is currently 17.58%.

In other news, General Counsel Thomas E. Laursen sold 10,000 shares of Zions Bancorp stock in a transaction dated Thursday, October 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $32.26, for a total transaction of $322,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the general counsel now directly owns 29,737 shares in the company, valued at $959,315.62. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Michael Morris sold 18,000 shares of Zions Bancorp stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $32.40, for a total transaction of $583,200.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 23,323 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $755,665.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 2.06% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of Zions Bancorp by 3.4% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 17,950,779 shares of the company’s stock worth $451,103,000 after buying an additional 596,109 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp boosted its position in Zions Bancorp by 3.6% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 10,955,604 shares of the company’s stock valued at $275,313,000 after buying an additional 382,293 shares during the period. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. boosted its position in Zions Bancorp by 2.1% in the third quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 5,408,399 shares of the company’s stock valued at $167,769,000 after buying an additional 109,696 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its position in Zions Bancorp by 7.9% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 5,359,703 shares of the company’s stock valued at $134,689,000 after buying an additional 393,926 shares during the period. Finally, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans boosted its position in Zions Bancorp by 0.3% in the second quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans now owns 5,092,352 shares of the company’s stock valued at $127,971,000 after buying an additional 15,640 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 91.36% of the company’s stock.

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About Zions Bancorp

Zions Bancorporation is a financial holding company. The Company operates through seven segments: Zions Bank, Amegy Bank, California Bank & Trust, National Bank of Arizona, Nevada State Bank, Vectra Bank Colorado and The Commerce Bank of Washington. It focuses on providing community banking services and its core business lines are small and medium-sized business and corporate banking; commercial and residential development, construction and term lending; retail banking; treasury cash management and related products and services; residential mortgage servicing and lending; trust and wealth management; limited capital markets activities, including municipal finance advisory and underwriting, and investment activities.

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