Maxim Group restated their hold rating on shares of Westamerica Bancorporation (NASDAQ:WABC) in a report issued on Friday morning.

“WABC reported 4Q17 EPS of $0.16, which included four non-recurring items (a DTA writedown, a low-income housing LP writedown, a loss contingency, and securities gains) which reduced EPS by a net $0.42. WABC’s core performance metrics were, as usual, very strong. WABC’s deposit franchise remained its greatest strength. However, lack of loan growth remains WABC’s greatest challenge, in our view, in spite of period-end loans growing slightly from 3Q17. We are raising our 2018 EPS estimate (which includes stabilization of loan balances) to $2.65, from $2.30, mainly based on a lower tax rate.”,” the firm’s analyst commented.

Several other equities analysts have also issued reports on the stock. BidaskClub lowered shares of Westamerica Bancorporation from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Saturday, January 6th. Sandler O’Neill reaffirmed a sell rating and issued a $54.00 price target on shares of Westamerica Bancorporation in a report on Thursday, January 4th. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reaffirmed a hold rating and issued a $58.00 price target on shares of Westamerica Bancorporation in a report on Friday, December 22nd.

Westamerica Bancorporation (WABC) traded up $2.05 during midday trading on Friday, reaching $62.52. 191,000 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 88,662. Westamerica Bancorporation has a fifty-two week low of $49.38 and a fifty-two week high of $64.26. The stock has a market capitalization of $1,652.09, a price-to-earnings ratio of 32.91 and a beta of 1.07.

Westamerica Bancorporation (NASDAQ:WABC) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The financial services provider reported $0.57 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.57. Westamerica Bancorporation had a net margin of 26.26% and a return on equity of 10.30%. The business had revenue of $45.22 million for the quarter.

In other news, SVP Dennis R. Hansen sold 20,000 shares of Westamerica Bancorporation stock in a transaction on Thursday, November 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.13, for a total transaction of $1,162,600.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 19,721 shares in the company, valued at $1,146,381.73. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, VP James J. Schneck sold 6,000 shares of Westamerica Bancorporation stock in a transaction on Thursday, October 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $58.86, for a total transaction of $353,160.00. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 6,025 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $354,631.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 56,868 shares of company stock worth $3,340,734 over the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 4.90% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. American Century Companies Inc. lifted its position in Westamerica Bancorporation by 13.0% during the third quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 2,243,866 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $133,600,000 after purchasing an additional 258,580 shares during the period. Deprince Race & Zollo Inc. increased its holdings in Westamerica Bancorporation by 18.1% in the third quarter. Deprince Race & Zollo Inc. now owns 544,664 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $32,429,000 after buying an additional 83,601 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its holdings in Westamerica Bancorporation by 3.1% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 2,629,587 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $147,362,000 after buying an additional 78,257 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its holdings in Westamerica Bancorporation by 15.8% in the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 571,520 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $34,028,000 after buying an additional 77,810 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its holdings in Westamerica Bancorporation by 29.4% in the third quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 268,824 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $16,005,000 after buying an additional 61,007 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 85.95% of the company’s stock.

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About Westamerica Bancorporation

Westamerica Bancorporation is a bank holding company. The Company provides a range of banking services to individual and corporate customers in Northern and Central California through its subsidiary bank, Westamerica Bank. The communities served are located in Northern and Central California, from Mendocino, Lake and Nevada Counties in the north to Kern County in the south.

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