Zacks Investment Research Upgrades First Horizon National (FHN) to Strong-Buy

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of First Horizon National (NYSE:FHN) from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note published on Tuesday. The firm currently has $23.00 price target on the financial services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Shares of First Horizon have outperformed the industry over the past six months. Yet, the company has a decent earnings surprise history. It surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in two of the trailing four quarters. First Horizon's focus on cost control and efforts to strengthen its core Tennessee banking franchise bode well for the long term. Moreover, its inorganic growth strategies are likely to support the top line. Recently, First Horizon completed the acquisition of Capital Bank. However, higher legal costs resulting from numerous litigations are likely to weigh on the company’s profitability. Further, high exposure to commercial and commercial real estate loans seems risky. Also, the company's capital deployment activities do not seem sustainable on account of unfavorable debt/equity and dividend payout ratios.”

A number of other equities analysts have also recently weighed in on the stock. Royal Bank of Canada restated a hold rating and set a $22.00 price objective on shares of First Horizon National in a research report on Tuesday, December 5th. Morgan Stanley upped their price objective on shares of First Horizon National from $20.00 to $22.00 and gave the stock an equal weight rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 13th. Raymond James Financial upped their price objective on shares of First Horizon National from $20.00 to $22.00 and gave the stock an outperform rating in a research report on Monday, October 16th. UBS Group upgraded shares of First Horizon National from an outperform rating to a strong-buy rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 8th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. restated a buy rating and set a $20.00 price objective on shares of First Horizon National in a research report on Wednesday, September 13th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating, three have issued a buy rating and three have given a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $22.00.

First Horizon National (NYSE FHN) traded down $0.03 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $20.58. 1,931,166 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 3,373,433. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38, a current ratio of 0.94 and a quick ratio of 0.92. The firm has a market capitalization of $6,690.00, a PE ratio of 18.38, a PEG ratio of 2.25 and a beta of 1.03. First Horizon National has a 52 week low of $15.84 and a 52 week high of $20.86.

First Horizon National (NYSE:FHN) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Friday, October 13th. The financial services provider reported $0.32 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.30 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $337.00 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $340.48 million. First Horizon National had a net margin of 19.36% and a return on equity of 9.40%. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.27 earnings per share. equities research analysts predict that First Horizon National will post 1.11 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, January 2nd. Stockholders of record on Friday, November 3rd were given a $0.09 dividend. This represents a $0.36 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.75%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, November 2nd. First Horizon National’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 32.14%.

In other news, Director R Brad Martin sold 5,449 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, October 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $19.25, for a total value of $104,893.25. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 482,188 shares in the company, valued at $9,282,119. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. 2.09% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank increased its position in First Horizon National by 8.7% during the second quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 8,472 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $148,000 after purchasing an additional 676 shares during the last quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. acquired a new stake in First Horizon National during the third quarter worth about $182,000. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. increased its position in First Horizon National by 133.8% during the third quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 9,503 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $183,000 after purchasing an additional 5,438 shares during the last quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. increased its position in First Horizon National by 2.4% during the second quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 12,227 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $214,000 after purchasing an additional 286 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Riverhead Capital Management LLC increased its position in First Horizon National by 63.2% during the second quarter. Riverhead Capital Management LLC now owns 13,383 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $233,000 after purchasing an additional 5,183 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 88.97% of the company’s stock.

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About First Horizon National

First Horizon National Corporation (FHN) is a bank holding company. The Company provides financial services through its subsidiary, First Tennessee Bank National Association (the Bank). The Company has four segments: regional banking, fixed income, corporate and non-strategic. The Company’s regional banking segment offers financial products and services, including traditional lending and deposit taking, to retail and commercial customers in Tennessee and other selected markets.

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