Lakeland Financial (LKFN) Raised to Hold at BidaskClub

BidaskClub upgraded shares of Lakeland Financial (NASDAQ:LKFN) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report released on Thursday.

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports on LKFN. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods restated a hold rating and issued a $51.00 price objective on shares of Lakeland Financial in a research note on Thursday, July 26th. Boenning Scattergood restated a hold rating on shares of Lakeland Financial in a research note on Thursday, July 26th. ValuEngine cut Lakeland Financial from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Thursday, September 27th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Lakeland Financial from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $47.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, October 31st. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and four have issued a hold rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $49.00.

Shares of Lakeland Financial stock opened at $45.45 on Thursday. Lakeland Financial has a 52-week low of $39.41 and a 52-week high of $52.43. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.15 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.67, a PEG ratio of 1.47 and a beta of 0.76. The company has a current ratio of 0.97, a quick ratio of 0.97 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.22.

Lakeland Financial (NASDAQ:LKFN) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 25th. The financial services provider reported $0.80 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.78 by $0.02. Lakeland Financial had a return on equity of 15.54% and a net margin of 30.88%. The business had revenue of $48.36 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $48.60 million. As a group, sell-side analysts forecast that Lakeland Financial will post 3.09 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, November 5th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, October 25th were given a dividend of $0.26 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, October 24th. This is a boost from Lakeland Financial’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.10. This represents a $1.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.29%. Lakeland Financial’s dividend payout ratio is currently 43.51%.

In related news, Director M Scott Welch purchased 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, October 31st. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $43.61 per share, for a total transaction of $87,220.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 136,448 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,950,497.28. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, insider Batty Jill A. De sold 1,800 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.81, for a total value of $87,858.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 10,386 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $506,940.66. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have bought 10,124 shares of company stock worth $430,613. Company insiders own 4.40% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of LKFN. Walthausen & Co. LLC purchased a new position in shares of Lakeland Financial during the third quarter worth about $11,014,000. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Lakeland Financial by 9.0% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,071,608 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $99,829,000 after purchasing an additional 171,904 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC grew its holdings in shares of Lakeland Financial by 100.2% during the third quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 172,651 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $8,025,000 after purchasing an additional 86,400 shares in the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA grew its holdings in shares of Lakeland Financial by 17.6% during the third quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 446,604 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $20,758,000 after purchasing an additional 66,818 shares in the last quarter. Finally, TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC grew its holdings in shares of Lakeland Financial by 37.4% during the third quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 117,739 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $5,473,000 after purchasing an additional 32,048 shares in the last quarter. 70.56% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Lakeland Financial Company Profile

Lakeland Financial Corporation operates as the bank holding company for Lake City Bank that provides various banking products and services in Indiana. The company offers various deposit products, including noninterest bearing deposits; interest-bearing checking, savings, and money market deposits; and NOW and demand deposits.

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