Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Northwest Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:NWBI) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report issued on Thursday morning.

According to Zacks, “Northwest Bancorp, Inc. is a bank holding company whose sole activity is the ownership of all of the issued and outstanding common stock of Northwest Savings Bank and the majority ownership of Jamestown Savings Bank. Northwest Savings Bank is a stock savings bank. The bank is a community-oriented institution offering traditional deposit and loan products, and through its subsidiaries, consumer finance services. “

Several other research analysts have also recently weighed in on NWBI. BidaskClub upgraded Northwest Bancshares from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a research report on Saturday, June 10th. ValuEngine cut Northwest Bancshares from a buy rating to a hold rating and set a $16.00 price objective on the stock. in a research report on Thursday, May 11th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and three have issued a hold rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $16.60.

Northwest Bancshares (NASDAQ:NWBI) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, July 24th. The savings and loans company reported $0.22 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $124.21 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $116.82 million. Northwest Bancshares had a return on equity of 7.45% and a net margin of 18.91%.

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The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, August 17th. Investors of record on Thursday, August 3rd will be given a $0.16 dividend. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.99%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, August 1st. Northwest Bancshares’s payout ratio is currently 75.29%.

In related news, Director Philip M. Tredway sold 13,560 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $16.13, for a total value of $218,722.80. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. 2.00% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of NWBI. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in shares of Northwest Bancshares by 52,513.7% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 12,529,950 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $211,005,000 after buying an additional 12,506,135 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of Northwest Bancshares by 5.5% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 9,155,426 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $154,177,000 after buying an additional 478,726 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its position in shares of Northwest Bancshares by 2.1% in the first quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 8,207,109 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $138,208,000 after buying an additional 166,313 shares during the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP boosted its position in shares of Northwest Bancshares by 1.2% in the first quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 6,142,660 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $103,443,000 after buying an additional 70,860 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State Street Corp boosted its position in shares of Northwest Bancshares by 2.9% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 2,423,794 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $40,816,000 after buying an additional 69,226 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 66.35% of the company’s stock.

About Northwest Bancshares

Northwest Bancshares, Inc (Northwest) is a savings and loan holding company. The Company’s principal business consists of attracting deposits and making loans secured by various types of collateral, including real estate and other assets in the markets in which it operates. Its segments include Community Banking and Consumer Finance.

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