Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Sandy Spring Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:SASR) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report issued on Tuesday, July 25th. The firm currently has $45.00 target price on the bank’s stock.

According to Zacks, “SANDY SPRING is a bank holding company for Sandy Spring National Bank of Maryland. The bank is community oriented, and conducts a full-service commercial banking business through community offices located in Montgomery, Howard, Prince George’s and Anne Arundel counties in Maryland. “

Several other research firms have also recently issued reports on SASR. ValuEngine raised Sandy Spring Bancorp from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 17th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods restated a hold rating and issued a $40.00 price objective on shares of Sandy Spring Bancorp in a report on Friday, April 21st. Finally, BidaskClub lowered shares of Sandy Spring Bancorp from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Sunday, July 16th.

Sandy Spring Bancorp (SASR) traded down 0.05% during trading on Tuesday, reaching $37.85. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 68,834 shares. The stock has a market cap of $907.91 million, a P/E ratio of 16.20 and a beta of 1.02. Sandy Spring Bancorp has a 1-year low of $27.86 and a 1-year high of $45.64. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $39.67 and its 200-day moving average price is $40.90.

Sandy Spring Bancorp (NASDAQ:SASR) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, July 20th. The bank reported $0.61 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $55.90 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $55.53 million. Sandy Spring Bancorp had a return on equity of 10.44% and a net margin of 24.33%. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.44 earnings per share. Equities analysts forecast that Sandy Spring Bancorp will post $2.51 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, August 16th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, August 9th were issued a dividend of $0.26 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, August 7th. This represents a $1.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.75%. Sandy Spring Bancorp’s payout ratio is 44.26%.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company raised its position in Sandy Spring Bancorp by 0.3% in the second quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 535,327 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $21,766,000 after buying an additional 1,429 shares during the last quarter. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC acquired a new position in Sandy Spring Bancorp during the second quarter valued at about $353,000. BlueCrest Capital Management Ltd acquired a new position in Sandy Spring Bancorp during the second quarter valued at about $263,000. State Street Corp raised its position in Sandy Spring Bancorp by 16.9% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 523,549 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $21,287,000 after buying an additional 75,500 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. raised its position in Sandy Spring Bancorp by 13.9% in the second quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 808,009 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $32,854,000 after buying an additional 98,650 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 67.73% of the company’s stock.

Sandy Spring Bancorp Company Profile

Sandy Spring Bancorp, Inc is the bank holding company for Sandy Spring Bank (the Bank). The Company operates through three segments: Community Banking, Insurance and Investment Management. The Company’s Community Banking segment operates through Sandy Spring Bank and involves delivering a range of financial products and services, including various loan and deposit products to both individuals and businesses.

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