U.S. Markets open in 2 hrs 9 mins

Sterne Agee analyst sees CIT Group as a 'Buy'

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Shares of financial company CIT Group Inc. have dropped 6 percent since Sept. 18, after the Federal Reserve kept its financial stimulus going at current levels. That Fed stimulus has kept interest rates low — and CIT would have benefited if they rose, Sterne Agee analyst Henry J. Coffey Jr. wrote on Tuesday.

THE OPINION: Coffey thinks the recent decline is a buying opportunity. The company's net loan and lease portfolio is growing, he said. And CIT shares should eventually rise if the company can boost profits, share repurchases, and institute a dividend, he wrote.

Extra capital should limit the risk that the shares will drop further, Coffey wrote.

Sterne Agee has a "Buy" rating and a $55 price target on CIT shares.

THE STOCK: CIT shares gained $1.31, or 2.8 percent, at $48.15 in morning trading. The stock has traded between $36.02 and $51.52 in the past 52 weeks, and remains up about 23 percent since the start of the year.