Westamerica Bancorporation (NASDAQ:WABC) Upgraded to Buy by Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Westamerica Bancorporation (NASDAQ:WABC) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report issued on Wednesday morning, Zacks.com reports. Zacks Investment Research currently has $61.00 target price on the financial services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Westamerica Bancorp. is a bank holding company. The company provides a full range of banking services to individual and corporate customers in Northern and Central California through its subsidiary banks, Westamerica Bank and Bank of Lake County. It also owns Westamerica Commercial Credit, Inc., a company engaged in financing accounts receivable and inventory lines of credit and term business loans and Community Banker Services Corporation, a company engaged in providing the company and its subsidiaries data processing services and other support functions. “

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently weighed in on WABC. Piper Sandler raised their price target on Westamerica Bancorporation from $57.00 to $58.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a report on Friday, July 17th. BidaskClub cut Westamerica Bancorporation from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a research note on Thursday, October 15th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $61.33.

WABC stock opened at $52.59 on Wednesday. The business has a fifty day moving average price of $55.21 and a 200 day moving average price of $57.91. Westamerica Bancorporation has a fifty-two week low of $46.94 and a fifty-two week high of $69.08. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.42 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.39 and a beta of 0.70.

Westamerica Bancorporation (NASDAQ:WABC) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 15th. The financial services provider reported $0.74 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.74. Westamerica Bancorporation had a return on equity of 10.07% and a net margin of 37.49%. As a group, equities research analysts forecast that Westamerica Bancorporation will post 2.85 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, November 13th. Stockholders of record on Monday, November 2nd will be paid a $0.41 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, October 30th. This represents a $1.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.12%. Westamerica Bancorporation’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 55.03%.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in WABC. Marshall Wace LLP acquired a new stake in shares of Westamerica Bancorporation in the 2nd quarter valued at $6,889,000. WINTON GROUP Ltd bought a new position in shares of Westamerica Bancorporation in the 2nd quarter worth $4,634,000. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of Westamerica Bancorporation by 30.3% in the 2nd quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 271,618 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $15,597,000 after purchasing an additional 63,112 shares during the last quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. boosted its position in shares of Westamerica Bancorporation by 23.1% in the 2nd quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. now owns 263,028 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $15,104,000 after purchasing an additional 49,311 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State Street Corp boosted its position in shares of Westamerica Bancorporation by 5.3% in the 1st quarter. State Street Corp now owns 918,433 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $53,985,000 after purchasing an additional 45,920 shares during the last quarter. 77.44% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Westamerica Bancorporation

Westamerica Bancorporation operates as a bank holding company for Westamerica Bank that provides various banking products and services to individual and commercial customers. The company accepts various deposit products, including retail savings and checking accounts, as well as certificates of deposit to local businesses and professionals.

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