Stephens Reaffirms “Hold” Rating for Carolina Financial (CARO)

Stephens reaffirmed their hold rating on shares of Carolina Financial (NASDAQ:CARO) in a research note issued to investors on Friday. The firm currently has a $43.00 target price on the financial services provider’s stock.

A number of other brokerages have also weighed in on CARO. Raymond James Financial reaffirmed an outperform rating and issued a $42.00 price target (up from $40.00) on shares of Carolina Financial in a research note on Tuesday, October 31st. Brean Capital reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of Carolina Financial in a research note on Monday, October 30th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Carolina Financial from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $43.00 price target for the company in a research note on Wednesday, January 10th. BidaskClub lowered shares of Carolina Financial from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, December 7th. Finally, Sandler O’Neill set a $44.00 price target on shares of Carolina Financial and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, January 4th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, five have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $41.67.

Carolina Financial (NASDAQ CARO) opened at $39.16 on Friday. Carolina Financial has a 1 year low of $28.14 and a 1 year high of $39.60. The company has a quick ratio of 0.80, a current ratio of 0.81 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.19. The company has a market cap of $819.03, a PE ratio of 22.38 and a beta of 0.45.

Carolina Financial (NASDAQ:CARO) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, January 24th. The financial services provider reported $0.57 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.50 by $0.07. Carolina Financial had a net margin of 22.22% and a return on equity of 12.15%. The firm had revenue of $37.50 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $34.33 million. sell-side analysts forecast that Carolina Financial will post 2.68 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, April 6th. Investors of record on Tuesday, March 6th will be paid a dividend of $0.05 per share. This represents a $0.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.51%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, March 5th. Carolina Financial’s dividend payout ratio is presently 11.43%.

In related news, Director Robert M. Moise sold 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.76, for a total transaction of $110,280.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 119,086 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,377,601.36. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 12.23% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Advisor Group Inc. lifted its stake in Carolina Financial by 826.4% during the second quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 3,159 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $102,000 after purchasing an additional 2,818 shares during the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc lifted its stake in Carolina Financial by 19.1% during the second quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 3,786 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $122,000 after purchasing an additional 607 shares during the last quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC acquired a new stake in Carolina Financial during the third quarter valued at approximately $143,000. Capital Investment Advisory Services LLC acquired a new stake in Carolina Financial during the third quarter valued at approximately $212,000. Finally, Affinity Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Carolina Financial during the third quarter valued at approximately $254,000. 35.07% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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Carolina Financial Company Profile

Carolina Financial Corporation is a bank holding company. The Company operates through CresCom Bank (the Bank), a state-chartered commercial bank. The Company operates through three segments: community banking, wholesale mortgage banking (mortgage banking) and other. The Company’s community banking segment provides traditional banking services offered through CresCom Bank.

Analyst Recommendations for Carolina Financial (NASDAQ:CARO)

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