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PrivateBancorp Upped to Strong Buy

Zacks Equity Research

On Sep 3, Zacks Investment Research upgraded PrivateBancorp, Inc. (PVTB) to a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

Why the Upgrade?

PrivateBancorp has been witnessing rising earnings estimates on the back of strong second-quarter 2013 results. Moreover, this well-known business and personal financial services provider delivered positive earnings surprises in 3 of the last 4 quarters, with an average beat of 19.95%. The long-term expected earnings growth rate for this stock is 7.75%.

PrivateBancorp reported its second-quarter results on Jul 18 with earnings per share of 37 cents beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 33 cents by 12.1% and the year-ago earnings of 19 cents by 94.7%. Results were positively driven by higher net revenue, reduced provision for loan losses and lower non-interest expenses.

Net revenue surged 0.9% year over year to $132.7 million. This upsurge reflected growth in interest and non-interest income. Further, non-interest expenses decreased 7.9% to $77.3 million, as compared with the prior-year period.

Provision for loan and covered loan losses substantially declined 48.2% year over year to $8.8 million. However, on the downside, interest expenses escalated 11.2% to $17.9 million, as compared with the prior-year period.

Following second-quarter 2013 results, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2013 increased 8.1% to $1.47 per share on the back of all 11 estimates upward revisions, over the last 60 days for PrivateBancorp. For 2014, the Zacks Consensus Estimate advanced 6.2% to $1.54 per share as 10 of the 11 estimates moved north, over the same time period.

Other Stocks to Consider

Besides PrivateBancorp, other Midwest banks with a Zacks Rank #1 include First Interstate Bancsystem Inc. (FIBK), Firstbank Corporation (FBMI) and Mercantile Bank Corp. (MBWM).

Read the Full Research Report on FIBK

Read the Full Research Report on PVTB

Read the Full Research Report on MBWM

Read the Full Research Report on FBMI

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