KeyCorp (NYSE:KEY) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Wednesday, July 12th.

According to Zacks, “KeyCorp’s shares outperformed the Zacks categorized Major Regional Banks industry over the last three months. The bank remains well positioned to benefit from rising rate environment, potential lesser regulations once the Financial Choice Act gets implemented and improving economic stability. Improving loan and deposit balances will lead to further improvement in top-line. However, exposure to real estate loans poses a risk to the company. Though there has been an improvement in the housing sector, any further deterioration in the real estate prices will create troubles for the company.”

A number of other brokerages have also recently commented on KEY. Instinet reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $23.00 price objective (up previously from $22.00) on shares of KeyCorp in a research note on Sunday, April 23rd. Nomura reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $23.00 price objective on shares of KeyCorp in a research note on Friday, April 21st. BidaskClub raised KeyCorp from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Saturday, June 10th. BMO Capital Markets raised their price objective on KeyCorp to $22.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, April 28th. Finally, UBS AG raised KeyCorp from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and raised their price objective for the company from $19.00 to $22.00 in a research note on Monday, July 10th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a hold rating and fifteen have issued a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $19.78.

KeyCorp (KEY) opened at 18.40 on Wednesday. The company has a 50-day moving average of $18.63 and a 200-day moving average of $18.26. KeyCorp has a 12 month low of $11.89 and a 12 month high of $19.53. The company has a market cap of $20.11 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.27 and a beta of 1.11.

KeyCorp (NYSE:KEY) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, July 20th. The financial services provider reported $0.34 earnings per share for the quarter, hitting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.34. The business had revenue of $1.64 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.53 billion. KeyCorp had a return on equity of 9.88% and a net margin of 16.62%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 52.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.27 earnings per share. Analysts predict that KeyCorp will post $1.36 EPS for the current year.

KeyCorp announced that its board has initiated a share repurchase plan on Wednesday, June 28th that authorizes the company to buyback $800.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the financial services provider to repurchase up to 4% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

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In related news, insider Craig A. Buffie sold 31,385 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, July 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $18.01, for a total transaction of $565,243.85. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director Ruth Ann M. Gillis acquired 3,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 3rd. The shares were bought at an average price of $18.00 per share, for a total transaction of $54,000.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now owns 10,551 shares in the company, valued at approximately $189,918. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have purchased 14,000 shares of company stock worth $254,720. 0.65% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in KEY. Focused Wealth Management Inc boosted its position in KeyCorp by 613.0% in the first quarter. Focused Wealth Management Inc now owns 5,961 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $106,000 after buying an additional 5,125 shares during the last quarter. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. boosted its position in KeyCorp by 20.2% in the first quarter. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. now owns 6,699 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $119,000 after buying an additional 1,125 shares during the last quarter. Cypress Capital Management LLC WY boosted its position in KeyCorp by 177.9% in the second quarter. Cypress Capital Management LLC WY now owns 7,030 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $132,000 after buying an additional 4,500 shares during the last quarter. CI Investments Inc. acquired a new position in KeyCorp during the first quarter valued at approximately $160,000. Finally, Equity Investment Corp Acquisition Inc acquired a new position in KeyCorp during the first quarter valued at approximately $179,000. Institutional investors own 81.23% of the company’s stock.

About KeyCorp

KeyCorp is a bank holding company. The Company is a bank-based financial services company. The Company operates through its subsidiary, KeyBank National Association (KeyBank), which is engaged in providing banking services. Through KeyBank and other subsidiaries, it provides a range of retail and commercial banking, commercial leasing, investment management, consumer finance, and investment banking products and services to individual, corporate and institutional clients.

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