Zacks Investment Research cut shares of First Horizon National (NYSE:FHN) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report released on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of First Horizon have underperformed the industry over the past six months. Yet, the company boasts an impressive earnings surprise history. It surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in three of the trailing four quarters. Second-quarter results reflect benefit from margin expansion and loan growth, partially offset by rise in expenses. First Horizon's 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. Also, the company’s focus to enhance shareholders’ value through capital deployment activities encourages us. However, consistently rising expenses are likely to weigh on its profitability. Also, significant exposure to commercial loans remains a concern. Further, legal costs from ongoing litigation issues might impact its financials.”

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently commented on FHN. Hovde Group upgraded First Horizon National from a market perform rating to an outperform rating and set a $21.00 price target for the company in a research note on Friday, June 29th. ValuEngine cut First Horizon National from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Monday, July 2nd. Jefferies Financial Group reiterated a buy rating and issued a $22.00 price target on shares of First Horizon National in a research note on Friday, July 13th. UBS Group cut First Horizon National from a buy rating to a neutral rating and decreased their price target for the company from $23.00 to $19.00 in a research note on Wednesday, July 18th. Finally, Raymond James cut First Horizon National from a strong-buy rating to an outperform rating and set a $19.00 price target for the company. in a research note on Wednesday, July 18th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $20.83.

Shares of NYSE FHN opened at $18.60 on Wednesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.28, a current ratio of 0.93 and a quick ratio of 0.91. The firm has a market cap of $6.11 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.25, a P/E/G ratio of 1.88 and a beta of 0.92. First Horizon National has a 1-year low of $15.84 and a 1-year high of $20.86.

First Horizon National (NYSE:FHN) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 17th. The financial services provider reported $0.36 earnings per share for the quarter, hitting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.36. The firm had revenue of $438.46 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $447.95 million. First Horizon National had a return on equity of 9.64% and a net margin of 10.74%. equities analysts forecast that First Horizon National will post 1.43 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 1st. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 7th will be issued a $0.12 dividend. This represents a $0.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.58%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 6th. First Horizon National’s dividend payout ratio is presently 43.24%.

In other news, Director Scott M. Niswonger acquired 100,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 1st. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $18.20 per share, with a total value of $1,820,000.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now owns 639,403 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $11,637,134.60. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Chairman D Bryan Jordan acquired 25,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 31st. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $17.76 per share, for a total transaction of $444,000.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the chairman now directly owns 611,832 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $10,866,136.32. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders bought 130,000 shares of company stock worth $2,352,400 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 1.75% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Capital Advantage Inc. acquired a new position in shares of First Horizon National in the second quarter valued at about $100,000. First Mercantile Trust Co. grew its holdings in First Horizon National by 91.8% during the first quarter. First Mercantile Trust Co. now owns 7,615 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $143,000 after acquiring an additional 3,644 shares during the period. Qube Research & Technologies Ltd acquired a new stake in First Horizon National during the second quarter worth about $148,000. Point72 Hong Kong Ltd grew its holdings in First Horizon National by 29,974.2% during the second quarter. Point72 Hong Kong Ltd now owns 9,323 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $166,000 after acquiring an additional 9,292 shares during the period. Finally, Twin Tree Management LP acquired a new stake in First Horizon National during the first quarter worth about $177,000. 85.90% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

First Horizon National Company Profile

First Horizon National Corporation operates as the bank holding company for First Tennessee Bank National Association that provides various financial services. It operates through four segments: Regional Banking, Fixed Income, Corporate, and Non-Strategic. The company offers general banking services for consumers, businesses, financial institutions, and governments.

See Also: Asset Allocation

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