Simmons First National (NASDAQ:SFNC) Upgraded by Sandler O’Neill to Buy

Sandler O’Neill upgraded shares of Simmons First National (NASDAQ:SFNC) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report released on Thursday morning, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. The brokerage currently has $30.00 price objective on the bank’s stock, up from their prior price objective of $26.00.

Several other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports on the company. Robert W. Baird reissued a neutral rating on shares of Simmons First National in a research note on Thursday, April 11th. Stephens set a $29.00 price objective on Simmons First National and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, June 20th. Zacks Investment Research raised Simmons First National from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Friday, July 26th. Finally, BidaskClub raised Simmons First National from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Friday, July 26th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Simmons First National presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $29.20.

Simmons First National stock traded down $0.86 during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $24.12. 79,904 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 392,977. The company has a market cap of $2.40 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.18 and a beta of 1.06. The stock’s fifty day simple moving average is $23.71. Simmons First National has a fifty-two week low of $22.08 and a fifty-two week high of $32.45. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.68, a current ratio of 1.00 and a quick ratio of 1.00.

Simmons First National (NASDAQ:SFNC) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 23rd. The bank reported $0.68 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.60 by $0.08. The firm had revenue of $189.36 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $186.20 million. Simmons First National had a return on equity of 9.90% and a net margin of 24.55%. Equities research analysts expect that Simmons First National will post 2.44 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 4th. Investors of record on Monday, September 16th will be paid a dividend of $0.16 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, September 13th. This represents a $0.64 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.65%. Simmons First National’s payout ratio is 27.00%.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in SFNC. Versant Capital Management Inc increased its holdings in shares of Simmons First National by 56.6% during the 1st quarter. Versant Capital Management Inc now owns 1,895 shares of the bank’s stock worth $46,000 after purchasing an additional 685 shares during the period. Marshall Wace North America L.P. acquired a new position in Simmons First National in the first quarter valued at about $59,000. Meeder Asset Management Inc. acquired a new position in Simmons First National in the first quarter valued at about $89,000. Campbell & CO Investment Adviser LLC acquired a new position in shares of Simmons First National during the second quarter worth approximately $279,000. Finally, Millennium Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Simmons First National during the fourth quarter worth approximately $295,000. 56.62% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Simmons First National Company Profile

Simmons First National Corporation operates as the holding company for Simmons Bank that provides financial products and services to individuals and businesses. It offers checking, savings, and time deposits; loan products, including consumer, real estate, commercial, agricultural, equipment, and SBA lending; personal and corporate trust services; credit cards; investment management products; insurance products; and securities and investment services.

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