Stock Traders Purchase High Volume of Call Options on Fifth Third Bancorp (NASDAQ:FITB)

Fifth Third Bancorp (NASDAQ:FITB) saw unusually large options trading on Thursday. Traders bought 5,643 call options on the company. This is an increase of approximately 899% compared to the average daily volume of 565 call options.

FITB has been the topic of a number of analyst reports. Wedbush upped their price target on Fifth Third Bancorp from $31.00 to $32.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 24th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reduced their price target on Fifth Third Bancorp from $32.00 to $30.50 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday. Nomura set a $29.00 price target on Fifth Third Bancorp and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, July 26th. Bank of America upgraded Fifth Third Bancorp from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $30.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Friday. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Citigroup reduced their price target on Fifth Third Bancorp from $30.00 to $27.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research report on Wednesday. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $31.23.

FITB stock traded up $0.67 during trading on Friday, reaching $26.85. 4,735,992 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 4,786,750. The firm has a market cap of $19.61 billion, a P/E ratio of 10.57, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.27 and a beta of 1.38. Fifth Third Bancorp has a twelve month low of $22.12 and a twelve month high of $30.20. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $26.84 and its 200 day moving average is $27.27. The company has a current ratio of 0.90, a quick ratio of 0.89 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82.

Fifth Third Bancorp (NASDAQ:FITB) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 23rd. The financial services provider reported $0.71 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.66 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $1.91 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.90 billion. Fifth Third Bancorp had a return on equity of 11.51% and a net margin of 24.39%. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.63 earnings per share. As a group, analysts predict that Fifth Third Bancorp will post 2.82 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 15th. Investors of record on Monday, September 30th will be given a dividend of $0.24 per share. This represents a $0.96 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.58%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, September 27th. Fifth Third Bancorp’s payout ratio is 37.80%.

Fifth Third Bancorp announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback plan on Tuesday, June 18th that allows the company to buyback 100,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization allows the financial services provider to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are typically a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

In other news, Director Evan Bayh acquired 4,000 shares of Fifth Third Bancorp stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 4th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $25.93 per share, for a total transaction of $103,720.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 48,517 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,258,045.81. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Timothy Spence sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, October 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.52, for a total value of $137,600.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 152,672 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,201,533.44. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.40% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in Fifth Third Bancorp by 16.9% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 50,942,882 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,284,778,000 after purchasing an additional 7,355,944 shares during the period. Nuveen Asset Management LLC grew its holdings in Fifth Third Bancorp by 21,301.1% during the second quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 6,318,040 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $176,274,000 after purchasing an additional 6,288,518 shares during the period. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company grew its holdings in Fifth Third Bancorp by 99.8% during the first quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 4,248,170 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $107,138,000 after purchasing an additional 2,121,611 shares during the period. Wells Fargo & Company MN grew its holdings in Fifth Third Bancorp by 36.8% during the second quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 7,491,535 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $209,013,000 after purchasing an additional 2,014,379 shares during the period. Finally, Acadian Asset Management LLC grew its holdings in Fifth Third Bancorp by 2,279.4% during the first quarter. Acadian Asset Management LLC now owns 1,843,474 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $46,495,000 after purchasing an additional 1,765,998 shares during the period. 78.04% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Fifth Third Bancorp

Fifth Third Bancorp operates as a diversified financial services company in the United States. The company's Commercial Banking segment offers credit intermediation, cash management, and financial services; lending and depository products; and cash management, foreign exchange and international trade finance, derivatives and capital markets services, asset-based lending, real estate finance, public finance, commercial leasing, and syndicated finance for business, government, and professional customers.

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