Bank of Montreal (NYSE:BMO) Cut to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Bank of Montreal (NYSE:BMO) (TSE:BMO) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report report published on Tuesday morning, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Bank of Montreal is one of the largest banks in North America, is also one of Canada’s oldest banks. The bank offers a complete range of financial services in our chosen markets on both sides of the Canada-United States border. The bank offers to all of their clients not just financial products, but knowledge-based solutions, custom-made to add value in their financial affairs. “

Other equities research analysts also recently issued reports about the company. Barclays reaffirmed a hold rating on shares of Bank of Montreal in a report on Tuesday, June 11th. Scotia Howard Weill reaffirmed a sector perform rating on shares of Bank of Montreal in a report on Thursday, May 30th. Howard Weil downgraded Bank of Montreal from a sector outperform rating to a sector perform rating in a report on Thursday, May 30th. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded Bank of Montreal from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Thursday, August 1st. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $97.00.

Shares of BMO opened at $69.94 on Tuesday. The company has a current ratio of 1.03, a quick ratio of 1.03 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.16. The firm has a market cap of $44.43 billion, a PE ratio of 10.01, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.72 and a beta of 1.16. The company’s 50 day simple moving average is $74.02 and its 200-day simple moving average is $75.61. Bank of Montreal has a 12-month low of $62.79 and a 12-month high of $84.36.

Bank of Montreal (NYSE:BMO) (TSE:BMO) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, May 29th. The bank reported $1.72 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.69 by $0.03. Bank of Montreal had a net margin of 17.27% and a return on equity of 14.54%. The business had revenue of $5.65 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.60 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $2.20 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up .6% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities research analysts forecast that Bank of Montreal will post 7.15 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, August 27th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, August 1st will be issued a $0.769 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, July 31st. This represents a $3.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.40%. This is an increase from Bank of Montreal’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.76. Bank of Montreal’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 44.64%.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its position in shares of Bank of Montreal by 13.2% in the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 739,643 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $48,362,000 after acquiring an additional 86,282 shares during the period. Gulf International Bank UK Ltd increased its position in shares of Bank of Montreal by 3.0% in the first quarter. Gulf International Bank UK Ltd now owns 12,154 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $910,000 after acquiring an additional 350 shares during the period. Eqis Capital Management Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Bank of Montreal in the first quarter valued at about $240,000. Financial Gravity Wealth Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Bank of Montreal in the first quarter valued at about $25,000. Finally, Horan Capital Advisors LLC. purchased a new position in shares of Bank of Montreal in the first quarter valued at about $34,000. 41.25% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Bank of Montreal

Bank of Montreal provides diversified financial services primarily in North America. It operates through three groups: Personal and Commercial Banking, Wealth Management, and BMO Capital Markets. The company's personal banking products and services include checking and savings accounts, credit cards, mortgages, and financial and investment advice services; and commercial banking products and services comprise business deposit accounts, commercial credit cards, business loans and commercial mortgages, cash management solutions, foreign exchange, and specialized banking programs for small business and commercial banking customers, as well as wealth management products and services, such as insurance products.

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