Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of PNC Financial Services Group Inc. (NYSE:PNC) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Thursday morning.

According to Zacks, “We remain encouraged by PNC Financial's efforts to generate positive operating leverage through its cost saving initiatives. Notably, management projects net interest income and fee revenue to remain stable on a sequential basis in the fourth quarter. Also, we remain optimistic as the bank remains well positioned for top-line growth, supported by consistent growth in loans and deposits and fee income. However, margin compression is expected to persist in absence of significant rise in interest rate. Further, escalating costs stemming from legal hassles and stringent regulatory requirements remain near-term headwinds to the company’s profitability and flexibility in business operations.”

A number of other brokerages have also weighed in on PNC. Vetr lowered PNC Financial Services Group from a sell rating to a strong sell rating and set a $95.30 price objective on the stock. in a report on Tuesday, November 15th. RBC Capital Markets reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $95.00 price objective on shares of PNC Financial Services Group in a report on Thursday, November 3rd. Barclays PLC reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $97.00 price objective on shares of PNC Financial Services Group in a report on Tuesday, October 11th. Raymond James Financial Inc. raised PNC Financial Services Group from an underperform rating to a market perform rating in a report on Thursday, October 6th. Finally, Nomura lowered PNC Financial Services Group from a buy rating to a neutral rating in a report on Monday, October 10th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have given a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $97.20.

Analyst Recommendations for PNC Financial Services Group (NYSE:PNC)

Shares of PNC Financial Services Group (NYSE:PNC) opened at 109.26 on Thursday. PNC Financial Services Group has a 52 week low of $77.40 and a 52 week high of $112.07. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $99.00 and a 200-day moving average price of $89.43. The firm has a market capitalization of $53.16 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.19 and a beta of 0.82.

PNC Financial Services Group (NYSE:PNC) last released its earnings results on Friday, October 14th. The company reported $1.84 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.78 by $0.06. The business had revenue of $3.83 billion for the quarter. PNC Financial Services Group had a return on equity of 9.04% and a net margin of 23.77%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up .9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.90 EPS. Equities research analysts predict that PNC Financial Services Group will post $7.16 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, November 7th. Stockholders of record on Monday, October 17th were paid a $0.55 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, October 13th. This represents a $2.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.01%. PNC Financial Services Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 30.51%.

In other news, CEO William S. Demchak sold 179,809 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $107.61, for a total value of $19,349,246.49. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 531,755 shares in the company, valued at $57,222,155.55. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, CEO William S. Demchak sold 82,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, October 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $95.31, for a total value of $7,863,075.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 476,255 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $45,391,864.05. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.57% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. acquired a new position in shares of PNC Financial Services Group during the second quarter worth approximately $126,658,000. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC increased its position in shares of PNC Financial Services Group by 95.3% in the third quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 3,134,850 shares of the company’s stock worth $282,419,000 after buying an additional 1,529,524 shares in the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA increased its position in shares of PNC Financial Services Group by 22.1% in the second quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 7,709,313 shares of the company’s stock worth $627,462,000 after buying an additional 1,395,872 shares in the last quarter. Cohen & Steers Inc. increased its position in shares of PNC Financial Services Group by 1,098.6% in the second quarter. Cohen & Steers Inc. now owns 1,371,150 shares of the company’s stock worth $156,339,000 after buying an additional 1,256,750 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Toronto Dominion Bank increased its position in shares of PNC Financial Services Group by 15,925.5% in the third quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 1,018,421 shares of the company’s stock worth $91,750,000 after buying an additional 1,012,066 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 80.90% of the company’s stock.

About PNC Financial Services Group

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc (PNC) is a diversified financial services company in the United States. The Company operates through six segments: Retail Banking, Corporate & Institutional Banking, Asset Management Group, Residential Mortgage Banking, BlackRock and Non-Strategic Assets Portfolio.

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