BancorpSouth, Inc. (NYSE:BXS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday. The firm presently has a $34.00 price target on the bank’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target points to a potential upside of 10.39% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Shares of BancorpSouth have outperformed the industry over the past six months. The performance was supported by the company’s impressive earnings surprise history.  It surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in three of the trailing four quarters. Given a strong balance sheet position, the company has been steadily enhancing shareholders’ value through strategic acquisitions, dividend hikes and share buybacks. Notably, the company has entered into an Agreement and Plan of Reorganization whereby BancorpSouth will be merged with and into its wholly-owned bank subsidiary, BancorpSouth Bank. Further, its efforts to enhance non-interest income will go a long way in supporting the bottom line. Though, continued pressure on margin due to lower yields remains a major concern, BancorpSouth’s expense management initiatives keep us encouraged.”

A number of other equities analysts have also commented on BXS. Brean Capital reissued a “hold” rating on shares of BancorpSouth in a report on Wednesday, August 2nd. ValuEngine raised shares of BancorpSouth from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, September 20th. Stephens set a $35.00 price target on shares of BancorpSouth and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, July 27th. BidaskClub lowered shares of BancorpSouth from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Saturday, August 12th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $33.00 price target on shares of BancorpSouth in a report on Friday, August 11th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $32.67.

Shares of BancorpSouth (NYSE BXS) traded up 0.65% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, reaching $30.95. 206,556 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $29.26 and a 200 day moving average price of $29.97. The firm has a market cap of $2.82 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.06 and a beta of 1.40. BancorpSouth has a 52-week low of $22.23 and a 52-week high of $32.40.

BancorpSouth (NYSE:BXS) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 19th. The bank reported $0.42 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $185.61 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $187.78 million. BancorpSouth had a net margin of 19.46% and a return on equity of 8.77%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.39 EPS. Analysts forecast that BancorpSouth will post $1.66 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Teacher Retirement System of Texas boosted its stake in shares of BancorpSouth by 0.8% in the 2nd quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 6,776 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $207,000 after purchasing an additional 54 shares in the last quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System boosted its stake in shares of BancorpSouth by 0.9% in the 2nd quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 21,700 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $662,000 after purchasing an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank boosted its stake in shares of BancorpSouth by 9.0% in the 2nd quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 3,841 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $117,000 after purchasing an additional 316 shares in the last quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc boosted its stake in shares of BancorpSouth by 3.1% in the 1st quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc now owns 10,921 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $330,000 after purchasing an additional 329 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Liberty Mutual Group Asset Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of BancorpSouth by 1.0% in the 1st quarter. Liberty Mutual Group Asset Management Inc. now owns 38,431 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $1,161,000 after purchasing an additional 379 shares in the last quarter. 65.24% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

BancorpSouth Company Profile

BancorpSouth, Inc is a financial holding company. The Company, through its principal bank subsidiary, BancorpSouth Bank (the Bank), conducts commercial banking and financial services operations in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Tennessee, Texas and Illinois. The Company’s segments include Community Banking, Insurance Agencies, and General Corporate and Other.

Analyst Recommendations for BancorpSouth (NYSE:BXS)

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