UPDATE: Bank of America Raises PT on First Niagara Financial Group Following CEO Transition
In a report published Wednesday, Bank of America analyst Erika Penala reiterated a Buy rating on First Niagara Financial Group (NASDAQ: FNFG), and slightly raised the price target from $8.75 to $9.00.
In the report, Penala noted, “FNFG announced after the close that CEO John Koelmel (age 60), who joined FNFG in January 2004 as CFO, is retiring, effective immediately. Mr. Koelmel has been instrumental in expanding the company. He had served as CEO since December 2006, during which time FNFG completed three whole bank deals and acquired 252 branches, transitioning from a thrift to a commercial bank and expanding its footprint beyond upstate NY into PA, CT and MA. That said, it seemed like the market has never quite ‘forgiven' the stock for how FNFG handled the HSBC deal (resulting in 33% TBV dilution and a 50% dividend cut), and feedback from investors suggested a more tempered view of management as a result.”
First Niagara Financial Group closed on Tuesday at $8.44.
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