Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Columbia Banking System, Inc. (NASDAQ:COLB) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Tuesday morning. The firm currently has $48.00 target price on the financial services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Columbia Banking System, Inc. is a registered bank holding company whose wholly owned subsidiary, Columbia State Bank,conducts a full-service commercial banking business. Headquartered in Tacoma, Washington, the Company provides a full range of banking services to small and medium-sized businesses, professionals and other individuals through banking offices located in the Tacoma metropolitan area and contiguous parts of the Puget Sound region of Washington, as well as the Longview and Woodland communities in southwestern Washington. “

A number of other research analysts have also weighed in on the company. DA Davidson reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $48.00 target price (up previously from $45.00) on shares of Columbia Banking System in a report on Tuesday, October 17th. Royal Bank Of Canada reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $42.00 target price on shares of Columbia Banking System in a report on Friday, September 8th. BidaskClub lowered Columbia Banking System from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a report on Saturday, August 12th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies raised Columbia Banking System from a neutral rating to an overweight rating and lifted their target price for the company from $43.00 to $46.00 in a report on Monday, July 31st. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $45.60.

Shares of Columbia Banking System (COLB) opened at 44.00 on Tuesday. The firm has a market capitalization of $2.57 billion, a P/E ratio of 22.35 and a beta of 1.26. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $41.23 and its 200-day moving average is $39.43. Columbia Banking System has a 52 week low of $31.90 and a 52 week high of $45.68.

Columbia Banking System (NASDAQ:COLB) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The financial services provider reported $0.70 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.52 by $0.18. The business had revenue of $126.00 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $119.16 million. Columbia Banking System had a return on equity of 9.93% and a net margin of 27.72%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 16.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.47 EPS. Equities analysts anticipate that Columbia Banking System will post $2.10 EPS for the current year.

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The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 14th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, October 31st will be issued a dividend of $0.22 per share. This represents a $0.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.02%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, October 30th. Columbia Banking System’s payout ratio is presently 40.00%.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. D.A. Davidson & CO. grew its holdings in Columbia Banking System by 2.1% during the 2nd quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. now owns 3,631 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $144,000 after buying an additional 73 shares in the last quarter. Amalgamated Bank grew its holdings in shares of Columbia Banking System by 1.1% during the second quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 7,945 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $317,000 after purchasing an additional 84 shares in the last quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System grew its holdings in shares of Columbia Banking System by 0.4% during the second quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 23,800 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $948,000 after purchasing an additional 100 shares in the last quarter. Pinebridge Investments L.P. grew its holdings in shares of Columbia Banking System by 0.3% during the second quarter. Pinebridge Investments L.P. now owns 39,058 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $1,556,000 after purchasing an additional 100 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Arizona State Retirement System grew its holdings in shares of Columbia Banking System by 0.7% during the second quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 30,459 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $1,214,000 after purchasing an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. 95.68% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Columbia Banking System

Columbia Banking System, Inc (Columbia) is a bank holding company for Columbia State Bank (the Bank) and Columbia Trust Company (Columbia Trust). The Company provides a range of banking services to small and medium-sized businesses, professionals and individuals. It offers products and services, which include Personal Banking, Business Banking and Wealth Management.

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