Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Hilltop Holdings Inc. (NYSE:HTH) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report sent to investors on Monday. Zacks Investment Research currently has $32.00 price target on the stock.

According to Zacks, “Hilltop Holdings’ shares have significantly outperformed the Zacks categorized Banks & Thrifts industry, year to date. Given the strong balance sheet position, the company is expected to grow inorganically over time. Further, PrimeLending business is expected to support the company’s bottom line. Also, the company’s capital deployment activities through share repurchases and initiation of dividend payments are commendable. Nevertheless, the company remains exposed to catastrophic events, high competition and rising expenses.”

Several other research firms have also commented on HTH. Compass Point lowered shares of Hilltop Holdings from a buy rating to a neutral rating and boosted their price target for the company from $28.00 to $28.50 in a report on Wednesday, November 23rd. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods lowered shares of Hilltop Holdings from an outperform rating to a market perform rating and boosted their price target for the company from $24.00 to $25.00 in a report on Monday, October 31st. Finally, FBR & Co boosted their price target on shares of Hilltop Holdings from $24.00 to $26.00 and gave the company a mkt perform rating in a report on Friday, October 28th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $27.10.

Shares of Hilltop Holdings (NYSE:HTH) opened at 27.89 on Monday. Hilltop Holdings has a one year low of $14.28 and a one year high of $28.37. The stock has a market cap of $2.75 billion, a PE ratio of 21.00 and a beta of 0.38. The company has a 50-day moving average of $25.31 and a 200 day moving average of $22.53.

Hilltop Holdings (NYSE:HTH) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, October 28th. The company reported $0.53 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.52 by $0.01. Hilltop Holdings had a net margin of 7.68% and a return on equity of 7.35%. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.47 earnings per share.

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The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, November 30th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, November 15th will be given a dividend of $0.06 per share. This represents a $0.24 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.86%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, November 10th. Hilltop Holdings’s dividend payout ratio is presently 17.91%.

In other Hilltop Holdings news, insider Jerry Schaffner sold 2,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, October 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.00, for a total transaction of $62,500.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Company insiders own 22.60% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA increased its stake in Hilltop Holdings by 86.0% in the third quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 7,163 shares of the company’s stock valued at $161,000 after buying an additional 3,312 shares in the last quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC bought a new stake in Hilltop Holdings during the third quarter valued at $206,000. Hsbc Holdings PLC bought a new stake in Hilltop Holdings during the second quarter valued at $210,000. KCG Holdings Inc. bought a new stake in Hilltop Holdings during the second quarter valued at $211,000. Finally, Frontier Investment Mgmt Co. bought a new stake in Hilltop Holdings during the third quarter valued at $211,000. 52.93% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Hilltop Holdings Company Profile

Hilltop Holdings Inc is a financial holding Company. The Company provides business and consumer banking services from offices located throughout Texas through PlainsCapital Corporation (the Bank). It has three operating business units, which include PlainsCapital (banking and mortgage origination), Hilltop Securities Holdings LLC (Securities Holdings) and National Lloyds Corporation (NLC).

5 Day Chart for NYSE:HTH

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