Wells Fargo (WFC) Given “Buy” Rating at Vining Sparks

Vining Sparks reaffirmed their buy rating on shares of Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) in a report released on Friday. Vining Sparks currently has a $65.00 price target on the financial services provider’s stock.

“While the recent issues surrounding WFC have definitely damaged its reputation, we believe the fundamental profitability and earnings power of WFC’s franchise is still intact and currently hidden by recent issues. WFC should still generate a mid to high-single digit underlying increase in shareholder value on an annualized basis from dividend payouts and TBV growth. We believe this strong value creation paired with its currently pressured valuation should provide long-term investors that can wait for the inflection point in the second half of 2018E the opportunity to realize total returns over 20% over the next 12 to 18 months.”,” Vining Sparks’ analyst commented.

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Several other research analysts also recently issued reports on WFC. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Wells Fargo from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Tuesday, December 19th. Buckingham Research raised shares of Wells Fargo from a neutral rating to a buy rating and lifted their target price for the company from $57.00 to $75.00 in a report on Thursday, December 21st. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Barclays lifted their target price on shares of Wells Fargo from $65.00 to $75.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a report on Tuesday, January 2nd. Sanford C. Bernstein raised shares of Wells Fargo from a market perform rating to an outperform rating and lifted their target price for the company from $64.00 to $69.00 in a report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a hold rating and issued a $59.00 target price on shares of Wells Fargo in a report on Thursday, January 4th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and fifteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $61.31.

Shares of Wells Fargo stock opened at $50.80 on Friday. Wells Fargo has a 1 year low of $49.27 and a 1 year high of $66.31. The company has a current ratio of 0.88, a quick ratio of 0.86 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.26. The firm has a market cap of $248,228.89, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.36, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.34 and a beta of 1.13.

Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, April 13th. The financial services provider reported $1.12 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.07 by $0.05. Wells Fargo had a net margin of 22.80% and a return on equity of 12.44%. The company had revenue of $21.93 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $21.74 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $1.00 EPS. Wells Fargo’s revenue for the quarter was down 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts forecast that Wells Fargo will post 4.69 EPS for the current year.

Wells Fargo announced that its Board of Directors has approved a stock buyback plan on Tuesday, January 23rd that authorizes the company to repurchase 350,000,000 shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the financial services provider to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

In related news, Director Ronald Sargent acquired 9,000 shares of Wells Fargo stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, February 12th. The stock was purchased at an average price of $55.98 per share, for a total transaction of $503,820.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now directly owns 81 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,534.38. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. 0.09% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Highland Private Wealth Management raised its position in Wells Fargo by 1.0% during the second quarter. Highland Private Wealth Management now owns 4,481 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $248,000 after acquiring an additional 43 shares during the last quarter. Courier Capital LLC raised its position in Wells Fargo by 0.4% during the second quarter. Courier Capital LLC now owns 38,222 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $2,118,000 after acquiring an additional 137 shares during the last quarter. Meridian Investment Counsel Inc. raised its position in Wells Fargo by 1.1% during the second quarter. Meridian Investment Counsel Inc. now owns 17,895 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $992,000 after acquiring an additional 200 shares during the last quarter. Monetary Management Group Inc. raised its position in Wells Fargo by 0.9% during the second quarter. Monetary Management Group Inc. now owns 23,023 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $1,276,000 after acquiring an additional 200 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Farmers National Bank raised its position in Wells Fargo by 2.9% during the second quarter. Farmers National Bank now owns 9,688 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $537,000 after acquiring an additional 270 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 77.29% of the company’s stock.

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Wells Fargo Company Profile

Wells Fargo & Company, a diversified financial services company, provides retail, commercial, and corporate banking services to individuals, businesses, and institutions. The company's Community Banking segment offers checking and savings accounts; credit and debit cards; and automobile, student, mortgage, home equity, and small business loans.

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