Shares of Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY) hit a new 52-week high during trading on Friday following a dividend announcement from the company. The stock traded as high as $39.24 and last traded at $39.23, with a volume of 185,506 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $39.04.

The newly announced dividend which will be paid on Friday, March 10th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, March 1st will be paid a $0.22 dividend. This represents a $0.88 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.25%. This is a positive change from Cathay General Bancorp’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.21. Cathay General Bancorp’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 38.36%.

CATY has been the topic of several analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Cathay General Bancorp from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $42.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, December 20th. Piper Jaffray Companies upgraded shares of Cathay General Bancorp from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $43.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Thursday, February 2nd. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. Cathay General Bancorp currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $36.40.

The company has a market capitalization of $3.12 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.91 and a beta of 1.19. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $37.45 and its 200-day moving average is $33.69.

Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, January 25th. The company reported $0.60 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $0.60. The company had revenue of $117.86 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $114.49 million. Cathay General Bancorp had a net margin of 32.89% and a return on equity of 9.94%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 8.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.51 EPS. On average, equities analysts anticipate that Cathay General Bancorp will post $2.33 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Cathay General Bancorp news, insider Dunson K. Cheng sold 40,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $35.62, for a total value of $1,424,800.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 263,907 shares in the company, valued at approximately $9,400,367.34. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, Vice Chairman Peter Wu sold 50,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $36.32, for a total transaction of $1,816,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 12,976 shares in the company, valued at $471,288.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 347,310 shares of company stock worth $12,597,682 over the last 90 days. Company insiders own 6.36% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of CATY. Prudential Financial Inc. raised its stake in shares of Cathay General Bancorp by 58.4% in the third quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 535,289 shares of the company’s stock valued at $16,476,000 after buying an additional 197,460 shares during the period. Retirement Systems of Alabama raised its stake in shares of Cathay General Bancorp by 1.0% in the third quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 95,527 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,940,000 after buying an additional 940 shares during the period. Teachers Advisors LLC raised its stake in shares of Cathay General Bancorp by 438.5% in the third quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 644,138 shares of the company’s stock valued at $19,827,000 after buying an additional 524,526 shares during the period. First Trust Advisors LP raised its stake in shares of Cathay General Bancorp by 72.0% in the third quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 133,940 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,123,000 after buying an additional 56,079 shares during the period. Finally, Northern Trust Corp raised its stake in shares of Cathay General Bancorp by 2.2% in the third quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 2,098,048 shares of the company’s stock valued at $64,577,000 after buying an additional 45,066 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 65.72% of the company’s stock.

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About Cathay General Bancorp

Cathay General Bancorp is a bank holding company. The Company holds Cathay Bank, a California state-chartered commercial bank (the Bank); approximately seven limited partnerships investing in affordable housing investments, in which the Bank is the sole limited partner; GBC Venture Capital, Inc, and Asia Realty Corp.

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:CATY

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