Shares of Wells Fargo & Company (WFC) achieved a new 52-week high, touching $38.67 on May 8. The closing price of this well-known asset manager reflects a solid year-to-date return of 11.4%. The trading volume for the session was 18.6 million shares.
Despite hitting its 52-week high, this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock has plenty of upside left, given its strong estimate revisions over the last 30 days and the expected year-over-year earnings growth of 8.3% for 2013.
Impressive first-quarter 2013 results – including an earnings surprise of 5.8%, credit quality improvement, and solid capital position – as well as strong capital deployment activities with a 20% increase in quarterly dividend in Apr 2013 have been the primary growth drivers for Wells Fargo.
On Apr 12 Wells Fargo’s first-quarter 2013 earnings came in at 92 cents per share, marking the 13th consecutive quarter of earnings growth for the company. Results improved from 91 cents earned in the prior quarter and 75 cents in the year-ago quarter. Moreover, reported earnings beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a nickel.
Amid a challenging economy, results at Wells Fargo reflected growth in total loans and deposits, as well as prudent expense management.
Additionally, Wells Fargo has delivered positive earnings surprises for 4 straight quarters with an average beat of 2.9%.
Estimate Revisions Show Potency
For Wells Fargo, over the last 30 days, 12 of the 25 estimates for 2013 have been revised upward, lifting the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 1.1% to $3.65 per share. For 2014, 9 of the 22 estimates moved upwards.
Some banks that are performing better than Wells Fargo include CU Bancorp (CUNB), TriCo Bancshares (TCBK) and Preferred Bank (PFBC). All these stocks carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
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