Provident Financial Services (PFS) Downgraded to Sell at ValuEngine

ValuEngine lowered shares of Provident Financial Services (NYSE:PFS) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report published on Thursday morning, ValuEngine reports.

Several other brokerages also recently commented on PFS. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Provident Financial Services from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $31.00 price target on the stock in a report on Wednesday, February 6th. Boenning Scattergood reiterated a hold rating on shares of Provident Financial Services in a report on Friday, April 26th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Provident Financial Services presently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $27.50.

Shares of PFS stock opened at $24.37 on Thursday. Provident Financial Services has a 12 month low of $22.22 and a 12 month high of $29.12. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.04, a quick ratio of 1.07 and a current ratio of 1.07. The company has a market cap of $1.63 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.39, a P/E/G ratio of 1.65 and a beta of 0.55.



Provident Financial Services (NYSE:PFS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, April 26th. The savings and loans company reported $0.48 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.46 by $0.02. Provident Financial Services had a return on equity of 9.03% and a net margin of 28.66%. The company had revenue of $87.20 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $90.53 million. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.43 earnings per share. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Provident Financial Services will post 1.89 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 31st. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, May 15th will be issued a dividend of $0.23 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, May 14th. This represents a $0.92 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.78%. Provident Financial Services’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 50.55%.

In other news, EVP Brian Giovinazzi sold 7,340 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, March 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $26.23, for a total value of $192,528.20. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 97,263 shares in the company, valued at $2,551,208.49. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director James P. Dunigan acquired 1,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, February 27th. The stock was bought at an average price of $27.30 per share, for a total transaction of $27,300.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Company insiders own 3.00% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in PFS. Bank of New York Mellon Corp grew its stake in shares of Provident Financial Services by 3.0% in the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,000,369 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $24,560,000 after acquiring an additional 28,701 shares during the last quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC grew its stake in shares of Provident Financial Services by 25.4% in the third quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 24,475 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $601,000 after acquiring an additional 4,965 shares during the last quarter. Morgan Stanley grew its stake in shares of Provident Financial Services by 4.3% in the third quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 176,705 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $4,337,000 after acquiring an additional 7,320 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its stake in shares of Provident Financial Services by 2.5% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 6,182,565 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $151,781,000 after acquiring an additional 147,866 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue grew its stake in shares of Provident Financial Services by 2.1% in the fourth quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 20,540 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $495,000 after acquiring an additional 430 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 66.53% of the company’s stock.

Provident Financial Services Company Profile

Provident Financial Services, Inc operates as the holding company for Provident Bank that provides various banking services to individuals, families, and businesses in the United States. The company's deposit products include savings, checking, interest-bearing checking, money market deposit, and certificate of deposit accounts, as well as IRA, and KEOGH products.

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