Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA (NYSE:ITUB) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report report published on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “On NYSE, shares of Itau Unibanco have outperformed the industry year to date. Third-quarter 2017 results reflect lower provisions and expenses, partially offset by a decline in revenues. The company remains focused on building strategies to expand inorganically. In December 2016, it completed the acquisition of 40% equity stake in Itau BMG Consignado. Further, it has been diversifying its loan composition with focus on origination of products with lower risks and more guarantees. However, rising operational risk, with management's expectation of non-interest expenses to grow in the range of 1.5-4.5% in 2017, remains a concern.”

ITUB has been the subject of several other reports. ValuEngine raised shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research report on Friday, September 1st. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Saturday, November 4th. Citigroup Inc. downgraded shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA from a buy rating to a neutral rating in a research report on Friday, August 25th. Finally, J P Morgan Chase & Co downgraded shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA from an overweight rating to a neutral rating and set a $12.50 price objective for the company. in a research report on Wednesday, July 12th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $12.50.

Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA (NYSE ITUB) traded down $0.07 during trading hours on Tuesday, hitting $12.69. 13,814,101 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 11,449,986. The company has a current ratio of 1.66, a quick ratio of 1.53 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.57. The company has a market capitalization of $83,102.05, a P/E ratio of 11.00, a PEG ratio of 1.39 and a beta of 1.60. Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA has a one year low of $9.10 and a one year high of $14.59.

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Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback program on Thursday, August 31st that permits the company to repurchase 60,000,000 shares. This repurchase authorization permits the bank to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are often a sign that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently disclosed a monthly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, December 11th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, November 2nd will be given a $0.0048 dividend. This represents a $0.06 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.45%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 1st. Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA’s payout ratio is 5.22%.

Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Harding Loevner LP boosted its stake in Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA by 3.4% in the second quarter. Harding Loevner LP now owns 59,387,290 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $656,229,000 after acquiring an additional 1,926,471 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA by 3.8% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 47,252,547 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $522,140,000 after acquiring an additional 1,733,626 shares during the last quarter. Capital World Investors boosted its stake in Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA by 1.1% in the second quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 41,357,500 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $457,000,000 after acquiring an additional 435,500 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA by 3.0% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 40,256,415 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $444,833,000 after acquiring an additional 1,166,338 shares during the last quarter. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its stake in Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA by 1.9% in the third quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 32,923,292 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $444,464,000 after acquiring an additional 627,005 shares during the last quarter. 4.50% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA Company Profile

Itau Unibanco Holding SA is a holding company. The Company provides a range of financial products and services to individual and corporate clients in Brazil and abroad. The Company operates through three segments: Retail Banking, Wholesale Banking, and Activities with the Market + Corporation. The Retail Banking segment offers banking products and services to a diversified client base of account holders and non-account holders, individuals and companies.

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