Hancock Holding Company (HBHC) Rating Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Hancock Holding Company (NASDAQ:HBHC) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Hancock Holding’s shares have outpaced the industry in the last six months. The company’s second-quarter 2017 earnings were in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate. We believe strategic initiatives on the back of several investments and branch acquisitions will accelerate revenue generation. Growth in loan and deposit balances along with improving rate environment and potential lesser regulations should support profitability going forward. However, continuously rising operating expenses, as the company invests in franchise and grows inorganically, remain a near-term concern. Also, its exposure to risky loan portfolios makes us apprehensive.”

A number of other research analysts have also recently issued reports on HBHC. BidaskClub cut Hancock Holding from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $51.00 target price on shares of Hancock Holding in a report on Friday, July 14th. Piper Jaffray Companies upgraded shares of Hancock Holding from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating in a report on Friday, May 12th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $47.00 target price on shares of Hancock Holding in a report on Thursday, April 20th. Finally, ValuEngine upgraded shares of Hancock Holding from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 2nd. Eight research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, four have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $45.63.

Hancock Holding (HBHC) traded up 0.97% on Monday, hitting $46.70. The company had a trading volume of 580,402 shares. The company has a market capitalization of $3.96 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.52 and a beta of 0.86. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $48.41 and its 200 day moving average price is $46.71. Hancock Holding has a one year low of $28.03 and a one year high of $52.94.

Hancock Holding (NASDAQ:HBHC) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 18th. The financial services provider reported $0.68 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.68. Hancock Holding had a return on equity of 7.85% and a net margin of 18.91%. The firm had revenue of $267.20 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $265.03 million. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.59 earnings per share. On average, analysts expect that Hancock Holding will post $2.73 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other Hancock Holding news, CEO John M. Hairston sold 41,903 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.81, for a total value of $2,003,382.43. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 73,544 shares in the company, valued at $3,516,138.64. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director Robert W. Roseberry sold 1,407 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.00, for a total transaction of $67,536.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 14,707 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $705,936. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 70,669 shares of company stock valued at $3,424,090 over the last 90 days. 1.15% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. raised its stake in shares of Hancock Holding by 72.2% in the first quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 2,239 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $101,000 after buying an additional 939 shares during the period. Glen Harbor Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Hancock Holding by 0.7% in the first quarter. Glen Harbor Capital Management LLC now owns 2,272 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $103,000 after buying an additional 16 shares during the period. Quantbot Technologies LP bought a new stake in shares of Hancock Holding during the first quarter valued at approximately $118,000. Tyers Asset Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Hancock Holding by 0.7% in the first quarter. Tyers Asset Management LLC now owns 3,124 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $142,000 after buying an additional 22 shares during the period. Finally, Flinton Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Hancock Holding by 0.7% in the first quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 3,976 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $181,000 after buying an additional 28 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 77.63% of the company’s stock.

Hancock Holding Company Profile

Hancock Holding Company is a financial services company that provides a network of service financial choices to the Gulf South region, through its bank subsidiary, Whitney Bank (the Bank), a Mississippi state bank. The Company operates through overall banking operations segment. The Bank operates under brands, such as Hancock Bank in Mississippi, Alabama and Florida, and Whitney Bank in Louisiana and Texas.

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