People’s United Financial, Inc. (NASDAQ:PBCT) saw a large decrease in short interest during the month of September. As of September 30th, there was short interest totalling 18,510,000 shares, a decrease of 5.8% from the August 30th total of 19,650,000 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 4,100,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 4.5 days. Approximately 4.7% of the company’s stock are short sold.

Several research firms have recently commented on PBCT. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods cut People’s United Financial from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $16.00 target price for the company. in a research note on Thursday, September 5th. Morgan Stanley reduced their target price on People’s United Financial from $17.50 to $17.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, October 3rd. BidaskClub cut People’s United Financial from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, October 11th. DA Davidson reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of People’s United Financial in a research note on Wednesday, September 11th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded People’s United Financial from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $16.00 target price for the company in a research note on Friday, October 4th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $16.80.

Shares of PBCT stock traded down $0.06 on Wednesday, hitting $15.77. 3,280,379 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 3,632,399. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.44, a current ratio of 0.96 and a quick ratio of 0.96. The company has a market capitalization of $6.26 billion, a PE ratio of 12.04, a PEG ratio of 5.93 and a beta of 1.26. People’s United Financial has a 1-year low of $13.66 and a 1-year high of $18.03. The company’s fifty day moving average is $15.36 and its 200 day moving average is $16.06.

People’s United Financial (NASDAQ:PBCT) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 18th. The bank reported $0.34 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.34. The business had revenue of $454.40 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $448.83 million. People’s United Financial had a return on equity of 8.21% and a net margin of 23.51%. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.32 EPS. As a group, equities research analysts expect that People’s United Financial will post 1.32 EPS for the current year.

People’s United Financial announced that its board has initiated a stock buyback plan on Thursday, July 18th that permits the company to buyback 20,000,000 outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the bank to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

In other news, CAO Jeffrey Hoyt sold 14,263 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, September 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $16.09, for a total transaction of $229,491.67. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 25,199 shares in the company, valued at approximately $405,451.91. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Corporate insiders own 2.40% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. First Trust Advisors LP increased its position in People’s United Financial by 10.0% in the first quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 3,403,221 shares of the bank’s stock worth $55,949,000 after buying an additional 310,119 shares during the period. GYL Financial Synergies LLC acquired a new stake in People’s United Financial in the first quarter worth $401,000. Nordea Investment Management AB increased its position in People’s United Financial by 11.4% in the first quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 96,687 shares of the bank’s stock worth $1,589,000 after buying an additional 9,883 shares during the period. FMR LLC increased its position in People’s United Financial by 10.8% in the first quarter. FMR LLC now owns 138,970 shares of the bank’s stock worth $2,285,000 after buying an additional 13,596 shares during the period. Finally, DNB Asset Management AS increased its position in People’s United Financial by 5.0% in the second quarter. DNB Asset Management AS now owns 73,182 shares of the bank’s stock worth $1,228,000 after buying an additional 3,452 shares during the period. 76.82% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About People’s United Financial

People's United Financial, Inc operates as the bank holding company for People's United Bank, National Association that provides commercial banking, retail banking, and wealth management services to individual, corporate, and municipal customers. The company operates in two segments, Commercial Banking and Retail Banking.

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