Sandler O’Neill Lowers Provident Financial Services (PFS) to Hold

Sandler O’Neill cut shares of Provident Financial Services (NYSE:PFS) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report released on Thursday morning, Marketbeat reports. The analysts noted that the move was a valuation call.

PFS has been the topic of a number of other reports. Boenning Scattergood reissued a hold rating on shares of Provident Financial Services in a research report on Friday, October 27th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Provident Financial Services from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Thursday, September 28th. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Provident Financial Services from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Thursday, November 9th. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Provident Financial Services from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a research report on Thursday, August 10th. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $30.00 target price on shares of Provident Financial Services in a research report on Friday, September 8th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $27.80.

Shares of Provident Financial Services (NYSE:PFS) opened at $27.45 on Thursday. Provident Financial Services has a 52-week low of $23.19 and a 52-week high of $28.92. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.19, a current ratio of 1.08 and a quick ratio of 1.08. The company has a market cap of $1,824.81, a P/E ratio of 18.18, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.78 and a beta of 0.97.

Provident Financial Services (NYSE:PFS) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Friday, October 27th. The savings and loans company reported $0.41 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.37 by $0.04. Provident Financial Services had a net margin of 25.90% and a return on equity of 7.61%. The company had revenue of $85.32 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $83.84 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.36 EPS. equities research analysts anticipate that Provident Financial Services will post 1.54 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a special dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 22nd. Investors of record on Friday, December 8th will be given a $0.15 dividend. This represents a dividend yield of 3.01%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, December 7th. Provident Financial Services’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 52.98%.

In other Provident Financial Services news, EVP Donald W. Blum sold 6,100 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $28.47, for a total transaction of $173,667.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director Carlos Hernandez sold 3,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.58, for a total transaction of $82,740.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 81,958 shares in the company, valued at $2,260,401.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 16,175 shares of company stock worth $444,216 over the last ninety days. Insiders own 2.90% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. SG Americas Securities LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Provident Financial Services in the 2nd quarter worth $118,000. Sei Investments Co. lifted its stake in shares of Provident Financial Services by 170.1% in the 3rd quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 6,028 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $160,000 after acquiring an additional 3,796 shares during the period. Amalgamated Bank lifted its stake in shares of Provident Financial Services by 1.5% in the 2nd quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 8,387 shares of the savings and loans company’s stock worth $213,000 after acquiring an additional 126 shares during the period. Susquehanna International Group LLP acquired a new stake in shares of Provident Financial Services in the 2nd quarter worth $251,000. Finally, Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Provident Financial Services in the 3rd quarter worth $298,000. 63.97% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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Provident Financial Services Company Profile

Provident Financial Services Inc is a holding company for The Provident Bank (the Bank). The Bank is a New Jersey-chartered capital stock savings bank. As a community and customer-oriented institution, the Bank provides personal service and customer convenience in serving the financial needs of the individuals, families and businesses residing in its primary markets areas.

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